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AVI-8 is one of the watch brands which I find totally class. The watches look great and are developed with great attention to detail. For some time now I have been like & commenting on the cool pictures of this watch brand and after a short back & forth AVI-8 was ready to do an interview with me. Super! It’s worth reading the article. Have fun with it!

1. I keep wondering what AVI-8 means. How does one come up with such a brand name?

Well the brand is pronounced AYVEEEE-ATE  – which is phonetic of aviate – which captures who we are really – an unexpected take on aviation.  It of course looks great and harkens back to squadron call out or aircraft references.

2. How did it all start? Who is behind AVI-8 and how was the idea born to create your own watch brand?

The brand really began as part of a conversation between us as watchmakers, and a group of aviation and history enthusiasts. Its no secret that aviation has been a central theme to mens watches but we wanted and believe we have reframed what the aviation watch genre could be.

AVI-8 AV-4011
AVI-8 AV-4011

We also wanted to produce watches that were well built, affordable and with a unique look that made each piece as much as a collectable as a functional piece of timekeeping.

3. Who’s behind AVI-8? And are the founders all crazy about watches? When did the passion for watches begin?

AVI-8 is owned by a UK based group that owns a portfolio of multiple watch brands. The founders are experienced veterans from watch industry and are still very passionate about every single watch we produce in here. Every minute detail is reviewed and approved by them when it comes to design and product.

AVI-8 AV-4051
AVI-8 AV-4051

Initially we wanted to create a no-fuss pilot field watch but as we dug into the history of wartime aviation we were more and more into the idea of bringing to life the planes and their detailing through the watches than just the pilots who manned these amazing aircraft. Along the way we looked to inject more history, more subtle as well as obvious use of aviation iconography and reference points from the RAF. Each watch and each family of watches now has a preset sub – DNA which can be traced throughout each collection.

4. There are now a few collections. Which exactly and which idea is behind it and which watches can I find there?

We produce a fair range of watches but generally all of them fall into families as follows:

The Hurricane AV-4011, AV-4046 & AV-4062

Based and named after the Hawker Hurricane – the famed WW2 era single seat fighter. Most popular Watches – AV-4011, AV-4046, AV-4062

Hawker Hurricane AV 4011 AVI-8
Hawker Hurricane AV-4011 AVI-8
Hawker Hurricane AV-4046 AVI-8
Hawker Hurricane AV-4046 AVI-8
Hawker Hurricane AV-4062 AVI-8
Hawker Hurricane AV-4062 AVI-8

The Lancaster Bomber AV-4050

The iconic and seminally important heavy air bomber that was a crucial part of the Allies victory in the air during WW2.

AVI-8 AV-4050 The Lancaster Bomber
AVI-8 AV-4050 The Lancaster Bomber

The Hawker Hunter AV-4052 & AV-4064

An early Jet age fighter that was developed in the late 40s and 50s. Most popular Watches – AV-4052 & AV-4064

AVI-8 Hawker Hunter AV-4052
AVI-8 Hawker Hunter AV-4052
AVI-8 Hawker Hunter AV-4064
AVI-8 Hawker Hunter AV-4064

Hawker Harrier AV-4047 , AV-4056 & AV-4063

A take on the modern aviation watch featuring elements, ideas and designs taken from the epically cool Vertical Take Off and Landing “Jump Jet”. Most popular Watches – AV-4047 , AV-4056 & AV-4063

AVI-8 Hawker Harrier AV-4047
AVI-8 Hawker Harrier AV-4047
AVI-8 Hawker Harrier AV-4056
AVI-8 Hawker Harrier AV-4056
AVI-8 Hawker Harrier AV-4063
AVI-8 Hawker Harrier AV-4063

The Flyboy AV-4054 & AV-4061

Basically the watch family that started it all – a no-nonsene field pilot watch that harkens to the colloquial term for the very young men who were the first military pilots.

Most popular Watches – AV-4054 and AV-4061

AVI-8 The Flyboy AV-4054
AVI-8 The Flyboy AV-4054
AVI-8 Hawker Harrier AV-4061
AVI-8 Hawker Harrier AV-4061

5. The watch market is highly competitive. New brands are created almost daily. How did you manage to be so successful so quickly and establish yourself on the market?

We have looked to juxtapose the watches by presenting them in a different way than other brands. Early on we wanted to make sure that while the watches were vintage, or historically referencing the past that they were presented in the future to contemporary , younger watch fans.

In addition, we wanted our brand to really have some stand out pieces that create a wow factor and enhance the brands collectability. Higher end automatic pieces, limited editions, and cool super concept pieces deliver a bit of excitement, interest than just the normal standard watches at attention that you see in watch stores.

AVI-8 AV-4053
AVI-8 AV-4053

Social Media helped build our brand – period. Whether it be watch bloggers, instagrammers, forums, or face bookers – before we new we had a brand – they knew. To this point, we take a lot of time to work with our audience, our fans and of course sometimes our critics to get a real view of where we are as a brand. We also believe that presenting  the rich backstories and background to our watches via social media in particular instagram helps create a richer, more indepth view of our products for those who buy them.

AVI-8 AV-4054
AVI-8 AV-4054

Of course Social media has helped us connect with the talented, photographers, visual artists and other brands that we are proud to call collaborators and partners with.

We are also digging deeper into the history of our inspirations and should soon release some of the watches in which we plan to use material of real historical war planes.

AVI-8 AV-4065
AVI-8 AV-4065

In sum , sticking to our brand DNA and listening to our fans, consumers is something that keeps us on the right path of delivering products as expected from AVI-8.

6. Can you say which watches are most popular and why?

1. Hawker Hurricane – AV-4046 ( Battle of Britain inspired limited edition collection that commemorates the epic Battle of Britain, which perhaps stands as the most seminal moment of air combat during the Second World War II)

Hawker Hurricane AV-4046 AVI-8
Hawker Hurricane AV-4046 AVI-8

2. Hawker Harrier II – AV-4047 & AV-4056 (Collection inspired by Rolls Royce Pegasus engine that has been central to the unique avionic engineering behind the Hawker Harrier)

AVI-8 Hawker Harrier AV-4047
AVI-8 Hawker Harrier AV-4047
AVI-8 Hawker Harrier AV-4056
AVI-8 Hawker Harrier AV-4056

3. Lancaster Bomber – AV-4050 ( “Sugar Blue Multi Eye” Edition timepiece that is replete with design cues and inspiration from the iconic Lancaster Bomber)

AVI-8 AV-4050 The Lancaster Bomber
AVI-8 AV-4050 The Lancaster Bomber

4. Hawker Hunter AV-4052 & AV-4064 ( An exquisite piece of design reflecting the instrument panel and cockpit of HAWKER HUNTER in its dial)

AVI-8 Hawker Hunter AV-4052
AVI-8 Hawker Hunter AV-4052
AVI-8 Hawker Hunter AV-4064
AVI-8 Hawker Hunter AV-4064

Most of these watches got popular because of the details to attention paid into design and in manufacturing these unique timepieces.

7. Will or will there be limited editions for collectors?

We try to release novelties or limited edition watches every year. Some of the limited edition collections that we released so far…

Hawker Hurricane AV-4046

Hawker Hurricane AV-4046 AVI-8
Hawker Hurricane AV-4046 AVI-8

{Battle of Britain inspired limited edition ( 1963 pcs ) collection that commemorates the epic Battle of Britain, which perhaps stands as the most seminal moment of air combat during the Second World War II}

Flyboy Bronze AV-4042

{ Limited Edition ( 300 pcs )  Bronze Flyboy is a robust interpretation of our most iconic timepiece through the usage of this unique and character driven material }

Flyboy Centenary AV-4058, 4059, 4060 & 4061

AVI-8 Flyboy Centenary AV-4060
AVI-8 Flyboy Centenary AV-4060
AVI-8 Flyboy Centenary AV-4060
AVI-8 Flyboy Centenary AV-4060

{ 2018 marks the centennial anniversary of the founding of the Royal Air Force of the United Kingdom. 100 years of the first independent air force by a country has seen the men, women and machine of the RAF involved in seminal chapters of military and aviation history.

To commemorate this event, Avi-8 has developed a unique collection of timepieces that incorporate design aesthetics and references that pay tribute to different eras of the RAF.

8. What else will we see from AVI-8 in the future?

We will try to keep our audience engaged with our latest releases . We think we are improving as a brand with every new release and paying much more attention to each design and product to make every watch a unique collectible asset for our Fans.

AVI-8-AV-4055
AVI-8-AV-4055

We’re always looking to develop what we have by being more creative with the story telling with our watches. We love working with other creatives and we have some cool collaborations coming up. Look for reboots of some of our most storied watches and new additions to each family of timepieces.

We continue to be humbled and amazed at where we are now selling Avi-8s – and we’re really just keen to keep producing good product and telling amazing and important stories through our watches.

AVI-8-AV-4057
AVI-8-AV-4057

Some exciting ideas and new collections are in play and we cant reveal much at this point of time but we assure all our fans, followers and collaborators should see a lot of interesting products in coming year 2019.

9. Is there anything else you’d like to say to my readers?

We thank you for continued support of the community out there and look forward to have your readers join our AVI-8 community.

Feel free to ask any further questions and edit the answers if there are some redundancies. Let us know if you need us to send over any additional information.

Thanks.

You find AVI-8 here:

https://avi-8.co.uk/

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Thank you very much for the great interview! I am absolutely thrilled! I am already very curious what awaits us in 2019. Currently I have three favourites and I hope to wear them soon. Thanks again!

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