Written in partnership with Darby Jones
The annual Monaco Grand Prix is one of three jewels in the crown of Formula 1 racing. The course, through the glamourous and often twisty streets of Monaco, is among the most demanding in Formula 1 racing. Each year, it attracts huge crowds of enthusiasts, party goers, and the intersection between the two. As with many such events, the race itself is the culmination of a week of socializing. Those who want to see and be seen on the European socialite circuit make it a point to be there, for the exposure as well as for the thrills.
This doesn’t take away from the skill required to complete a Monaco Grand Prix or the dangers involved in negotiating such a difficult course. The drivers who attempt it are all elite members of their sport; the event is an extremely competitive and taxing event with no guarantees. Until the checkered flag waves, anything can happen and often does.
It’s exactly the need to be at the top of your game that makes the Monaco Grand Prix so special. It is fitting that this year, APM Monaco, a high-quality family-owned jewelry brand, is celebrating its 40th anniversary at the F1 Monaco Grand Prix event. This is particularly fitting as the company, now run by Phillipe Prette and his wife, Kika, was founded in Monaco in the 1980s by Philippe’s mother, Ariane. Second, members of the Prette family have themselves participated in Formula 1 racing. Philippe is a 5-time winner of the Ferrari Challenge Asia and his son, Louis, is a 1-time winner of the Ferrari Challenge Europe. Along with jewelry, Monaco and racing are integral to the Prette family.
To mark its 40th anniversary in Monaco, APM Monaco is launching three new initiatives. First, a new partnership with champion racer Charles Leclerc, who, to commemorate the partnership, wore APM’s company logo on his racing suit. Second, a mutually beneficial collaboration with the MK Club, one of Monaco’s best-known and most iconic venues. Third, “new media” partnership between French Youtuber and influencer, Lena Mahfouf (AKA Lena Situations) and one of APM Monaco’s main brand ambassadors, Thylane Blondeau; these partnerships are meant to extend APM’s outreach to a new and younger demographic.
Additionally, APM Monaco introduced a new line for the 40th-anniversary celebrations. These “Yummy Bears” are beautifully crafted and warmly engaging jeweled teddy bear pendants that can be worn on necklaces, bracelets, or however their owners feel inspired to wear them. As with the other firsts mentioned above, the motivating principle behind Kika’s Yummy Bears is to connote the warm and safe feeling a child gets when they hug their favorite teddy bear.
In addition to its consumer-facing jewelry brand, APM Monaco is legendary in the industry with decades of experience and relationships manufacturing jewelry for established luxury brands. As APM already had a manufacturing base that could be employed to make elegant, creative, but far less expensive jewelry, APM Monaco’s in-house jewelry brand was destined to be.
This idea, like passing a lead car on a curve, entailed a good deal of risk. Without risk, however, one remains where one is, and APM has shown it’s not content to play ‘Follow the Leader.’ It’s turned the jewelry market on its head by creating a line of affordable products, with creative new designs released on a monthly basis. This is exactly the sort of disruptive, risk-taking behavior that engages us and makes us very interested to see where the company will go from here.