Talk about an October surprise.
Swiss made replica Audemars Piguet has reportedly pulled out of the Only Watch amid suspicions that the charity auction, founded by Luc Pettavino—the former CEO of the Monaco Yacht Show—has been mishandling the money it has raised.
The event is known for offering high-ticket one-of-a-kind creations put forth by nearly every major watchmaker in the industry. It’s the sale in which luxury fake Patek Philippe’s salmon dial Grandmaster Chime hammered for $31 million in 2019, becoming the most expensive watch ever sold. And it is also a platform where brands can show off their watchmaking prowess and hint at future releases.
But now red flags are being raised around Only Watch, which donates its proceeds to research for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. A recent WatchPro column, citing publicly available accounting information for a company called SQY Therapuetics, claimed that of the $100 million the charity has raised since 2005, only about half of it has been put forward to help find a cure for DMD. Only Watch has issued 50 grants were given to researchers working on treatments, but the rest has largely been funneled to biotech companies Synthena and SQY Therapeutics, its parent company. The latter is 49 percent owned by the Monegasque Association Against Muscular Dystrophies, a charity founded and chaired by Pettavino.
Of course, there are costs associated with putting on such a large event for close to 20 years, but certainly not to the tune of $50 million. Pettavino’s charity is based in Monaco, so there is no oversight of its operations. However, the country may soon pass a law that puts charity organizations under greater scrutiny.
In a response to WatchPro’s article, a spokesperson for Only Watch said, “While these accusations are serious and disconnected from the reality of our charity, they provide us with an opportunity to review the way we operate, our present and future stakes, and to provide you with additional data. To date, approximately half of that amount has been spent, a large majority of it on efforts to find a drug to treat Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients, the heart of our mission.”
Robb Report has reached out to aaa quality replica Audemars Piguet for confirmation and while the company did acknowledge that it had pulled out of the auction it also said, “There will be no further comment at this time.” We’ll see if others following Swiss movement copy Audemars Piguet’s footsteps.