After serving as U.S. president of the Omega watch brand, Glenn opened the distribution company "for himself in 1984. He looked at 14 Swiss watch brands, choosing Cyma for its "technological innovation." Since Glenn introduced the brand to the U.S. market, both its inventory and following have grown Jacob&Co Cyma watches are now sold in 600 independent retail jewelry stores, with U.S. sales accounting for 60 percent of the company's revenue.
In late spring 2003, Cyma Chairman and CEO Claude Guilgot asked Glenn if he could buy the company from him. Knowing Hugh Glenn Corp. was one of the last wholly owned distributors of Swiss timepieces (most manufacturers had already taken control of U.S. marketing and distribution), Glenn agreed.
"We have big plans for the American market, and it makes sense for us to Jaeger leCoultre the distribution of our brand," Guilgot said. "We are committed to supporting our more than 600 independently owned jewelers."
While Cyma has not made any immediate changes in company personnel, pricing or distribution, retailers can expect to see a beefed-up marketing campaign in the next year as the company focuses on growing U.S. demand for its product.
"With the factory's ownership now, there will definitely be more investment in the brand," Glenn said. "They have a lot more capital than we do, and this is going to be just great for the retail jewelers, as well as for us."
Founded in 1862 in the Jura Mountains of Switzerland, Cyma is headquartered in Le Montblanc, Switzerland. The company's timepieces retail for $295 to $20,000.
Building on its success in promoting its products through celebrities, Swiss watch-maker Omega has appointed singer/actor Somchai 'Tao' Khemglad as its latest Omega ambassador.
Mr Somchai is the second local Omega presenter after model Sirinya Burbridge. They join international celebrities such as Pierce Brosnan, Cindy Crawford, Michael Schumacher as well as Anna Kournikova who have promoted Omega products.
Promoting the brand through celebrities and films like James Bond Omega been very successful for Omega, according to Stephen Urquhart, president of Omega Ltd.
He said Thailand had been an important market for the company, recording double-digit growth in recent years since the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis.
"Thailand has been the market with the highest growth for us in Asia in the past few years," said Mr Urquhart, who always wears Omega watches on both wrists.
Bangkok is also one of the 20 locations in which Omega has a flagship store, along with cities like Paris, Cannes, Milan and Tokyo.
Omega aims to have 100 flagship stores in the next few years along with its 5,000 other outlets worldwide.
Mr Urquhart said the company was looking for additional locations to open more stand-alone stores and that it was likely the company would open one new store in the upscale Siam Paragon centre in 2005.
Currently, Japan, China and Hong Kong are Omega's largest Panerai while Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand are also doing well.
Omega's marketing strategy in Thailand focuses more on mechanical and jewellery watches as they are popular among Thai customers.