Apple Inc. (AAPL) Watch is Angela Ahrendts’ Luxury Market Entry, Says Seema Moody

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) hotly-discussed new product, the Apple Watch, is its executive Angela Ahrendts’ first salvo on the luxury market.

That’s according to Seema Moody who was reporting on Friday from London for CNBC as Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) was for the first time in the U.K. letting people try on its new watch.

“This is clear here in London that this is not just Apple’s push into wearables, but the luxury space as well, showcasing the watch here at Selfridge’s, a high-end department store that houses all the top luxury brand names like Prada, Burberry among others,” Moody reports.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s most expensive smartwatch, the Apple Watch Edition, runs from $10,000 to $17,000 as it features an 18-karat gold housing in either yellow or rose gold. Though pricey, the Apple Edition is said to have already sold out in some areas such as in China.

“Inside, you will see that the Apple Watch is just steps away from TAG [Heuer], Rolex among other Swiss watch brands. Many say this is Angela Ahrendts’ – the former CEO of Burberry [and] now Apple’s head of retail – strategic position to make the launch into the high-fashion category,” Moody says.

Ahrendts was the top executive at Burberry from 2006 to 2014 when she joined Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) to become the company’s Senior Vice President of Retail. During her tenure at the high-fashion company, she oversaw an overhaul of Burberry’s business which revitalized the struggling firm.

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Meanwhile, Moody was asking people for CNBC whether they would choose to buy the Apple Watch or a Rolex if they had $10,000 they could spend. All of those she asked told her they would buy a Rolex.

One person who was in Selfridge’s in London trying out the Apple Watch told Moody that he would buy the Rolex because it’s more “classic” and because he spends too much time on his phone anyway. Another told Moody that she would buy the Rolex because it holds it value, unlike the Apple Watch which is in danger of being obsolete in three years.

Christopher R. Hansen’s Valiant Capital owned about 1.24 million Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares by the end of the last quarter of 2014, a 23% decline quarter over quarter.

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