Daniel Castañeda, Garrett Greenberg, and Hunt Neurohr may just be juniors at TCU, but they know there is no time like the present when it comes to starting a business that provides consumers with something unique.
Their product? High-end watches. The connection? Castañeda and Neurohr are roommates. Neurohr and Greenberg met as classmates at ESD, and their friendship flourished when they found themselves at the same college.
“When Daniel came to me and told me about the chance to start a watch company, I was fully invested and ready to do it,” Greenberg said.
Monaco Watch Company went live in April, and while the watches themselves aren’t anything revolutionary, the price points have got TCU students and watch connoisseurs alike frequenting the online store for the latest deals for both men and women.
In fact, being college students has proven to be rather advantageous to the group of young businessmen, who have utilized their campus and the impact of social media to project their company into the accessories spotlight. With more than 1,000 followers on Instagram, the guys have used creative photos and persistent posting as a beneficial, not to mention free, advertising tool.
How exactly are these guys able to sell Bulova, Citizen Eco Drive, Movado, Seiko, and many more designer watches for as little as 75 percent the cost of their competition? For one, the watches are refurbished. And second, they are purchased in bulk via each brand’s surplus inventory. Prices currently range from $75 to $2,000; however, the inventory changes daily.
For those who are leery of buying anything other than a brand-spanking new watch, fear not. Each watch featured on the site has been graded so that customers know exactly what they are getting before they purchase. Not happy with what you bought? No worries, as Monaco offers free returns.
Greenberg’s advice to young entrepreneurs is to not be afraid of failure, and although mess-ups are inevitable, the rewards that follow them are always worth it in the end.
“For months we were on a learning curve, where making mistakes was a daily occurrence,” Greenberg said. “After time went by, we began perfecting our operations and began smoothing out the watch-selling process. It took a lot of time, however, and we still make mistakes even today.”
In a state and at a school where football is king, the company’s origins beg another question. Are these watches available exclusively to Horned Frog fans?
“One of our partners actually goes to UT, so I guess we have our hands tied,” Greenberg said.