Pelikan Raises Prices, Launches A New Website, And Puts The Wish Nib On Hiatus

Price Increases

Everywhere you turn these days, goods and services invariably cost more. Everyday items such as bread, milk, diapers, and gas command prices not seen in decades. The coronavirus pandemic and the resulting supply chain crisis deserve much of the credit for getting the ball rolling but those are only the origins of this story. Russia’s war in Ukraine and the resulting economic sanctions further disrupted many of the global supply chains, adding fuel to the economic fire already raging. Sprinkle in a healthy share of corporate greed for good measure and it’s not too hard to understand how we got here. Prices are now at levels not seen since the 1980s and consumers, who had been better positioned than during past crises to weather the storm early on, are now finding that their household finances are becoming increasingly strained. This is inflation, a rise in prices or the decline of purchasing power over time, and there is little remedy for it at the moment. Pen makers are not insulated from the harsh economic climate any better than the rest of us and the cost of doing business is rising. Pelikan generally raises prices once or sometimes twice a year in order to keep up with the usual annual increases in cost. This generally manifests as a 2-3% increase on fine writing instruments and a 5% increase on inks, refills, and accessories. What we have seen as of November 1st, at least here in the US, is a much more significant increase than in years past, no doubt a reflection of the current global situation. Read on to discover how your favorite Pelikan pens and inks have been affected.

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The Chronoswiss Styloscope Rediscovered, Literally!

Pelikan Chronoswiss Styloscope

Treasure can be lost, perhaps tucked away for a later occasion, then forgotten with the passing of time. Sometimes, like the periodical cicadas that emerge from under the ground only once every 17 years, that treasure is rediscovered. Chronoswiss is a mechanical watch manufacturer based out of Lucerne, Switzerland and founded by Gerd-Rüdiger Lang in 1983. In order to commemorate the company’s 20th anniversary, Mr. Lang, a big fan of the M800, commissioned Pelikan to create limited edition pen known as the Styloscope which was released in 2002.  Built off of the M800 chassis, the Styloscope was a numbered, limited edition of 999 pieces which I previously described in detail here. These were sold by Chronoswiss and could not be obtained through Pelikan. Now long out of production, finding one on the secondary market can be a challenge for those who lack patience or means as these models have appreciated nicely over the past few decades. The Chronoswiss company turns 40 next year and the Styloscope has now achieved its own milestone, turning 20 years old this year. While mildly interesting news in its own right, what really punctuates that birthday is the fact that 88 unnumbered Chronoswiss Styloscope pens were just recently found by Chronoswiss’ COO, Beat Weinmann, in the company’s basement. Talk about a serendipitous discovery. After much consideration regarding their fate, Style of Zug, a self-described Swiss concept store with a focus on fine writing instruments, has been tapped as the sole distributor for these newfound beauties which are being released into the wild. Read on to find out all of the details including how you might own your own Styloscope.

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News: M1000 Maki-e Phoenix Limited Edition

Pelikan M1000 Maki-e Phoenix Limited Edition

Today brought news of another new release out of Hannover, this one quickly following on the heels of the upcoming Souverän M800 40 Years Anniversary limited edition due out next month. If you will recall, Pelikan kicked off the 2022 season with their M1000 Maki-e Snow, Moon, and Flowers limited edition. Pelikan’s next release will again be another high end Maki-e model, this one titled Phoenix. The last time we got two Maki-e releases in a single year was 2019 when both the Five Lucky Bats and Japanese Umbrella debuted. These are always ultra-exclusive models made in very limited quantities with a price tag to match. Pelikan’s promotional literature states;

“The Phoenix is surrounded by numerous meaningful legends. Phoenix is a legendary spiritual bird in Chinese mythology, appearing in myths, ornaments, works of art, and architecture in East Asia. It is often depicted as a symbol of virtue, wisdom, beauty, and goodness. Phoenix also has the meaning of harmony, peace, femininity, beauty, prosperity, expansion, ascent and success. According to Chinese legends, phoenix represents the entire universe. The phoenix‘s head represents the sky, the eyes are the sun, the back is the moon, the legs are the earth, and the tail is a planet.”

The Maki-e Phoenix utilizes the oversized M1000 chassis, made in Germany, and decorated in Japan. This model is slated to arrive sometime in November 2022.  As is the tradition with many of these ultra-limited pens, this will be an edition of just 123 pieces available for worldwide distribution.

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Pelikan Looks To Sell Land Adjacent To Their Peine-Vöhrum Plant

Pelikan's Peine-Vöhrum Manufacturing Plant

While the central focus of this blog has always been the writing implements and related ephemera that Pelikan has produced over the past 90+ years, I find it insightful to also stay up to date regarding the goings on at the factory and beyond. Doing so can provide a window into the health of the company. Pelikan is a large organization with a very complicated corporate structure that contains many assets and investments which go well beyond their fine writing instruments. Still, some of their publicly reported business decisions hit close to home and those are the ones that I try to bring to you. I previously gave an account of three such occurrences beginning last June with demonstrations at Pelikan’s Peine-Vöhrum manufacturing plant by union employees protesting conditions at the factory. Then, in July 2021, Pelikan sold its logistics center located in Falkensee, Germany. By August, the factory had received a visit from Hubertus Heil (SPD), Federal Minister of Labor and Social Affairs, over the ongoing labor dispute. Since that visit, news about the goings on at the factory has been sparse, that is until now. Thanks to the recent reporting of Thomas Kröger for Peiner Allgemeine, we now know that talks are underway regarding a major project on the Pelikanstraße in Vöhrum. Pelikan is currently looking to sell a little over 6 acres of land in a plot that lies to the northeast of their manufacturing plant. The prospective buyer wishes to use the land to build a logistics center, a possibility currently being explored with the city of Peine. What does this potentially mean for Pelikan? Read on to learn more.

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News: Pelikan Souverän M800 40 Years Anniversary LE

Pelikan Souverän M800 40 Years Anniversary LE

Pelikan’s original model 400 was manufactured throughout most of the 1950s as well as the first half of the 1960s. The model would experience two major revisions over its production run, but it ultimately proved to be a great success for the brand. Times change and the company moved away from that iconic design for a number of years, with the Merz & Krell 400NN of the 1970s being a notable exception. That classic style which was so popular in its day saw a revival in 1982 when Pelikan launched the first Souverän fountain pen, the model M400. The black/green color combination featuring the “Stresemann” striped pattern was again alive and well and little changed from that 1950s model upon which it was based. Like its predecessor, the M400 was well received, a win that the company desperately needed at the time. The early 1980s marked a turbulent period in the company’s history, one rife with financial trouble and the M400 played its part to help turn Pelikan’s fortunes around. Forty years later and the Souverän series of pens remains a mainstay in the brand’s portfolio, its design is as iconic now as it ever was. In honor of that that forty-year anniversary, Pelikan is releasing a new limited edition fountain pen, the Souverän M800 40 Years Anniversary limited edition. The design of this new pen is meant to commemorate those features of the Souverän that have made their mark over the years. Read on to learn all about this newest limited edition fountain pen out of Hannover.

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News: M205 Apatite Special Edition Demonstrator

Pelikan M205 Apatite

Pelikan has been releasing special edition demonstrators to match their annual Edelstein Ink of the Year since 2015. These pens have invariably belonged to Pelikan’s lower tier Classic line which includes the M200 with its gold plated trim and the M205 with its silver colored chromium accents. Since their inception, these gemstone inspired models have been a popular and highly anticipated mainstay of the company’s annual line-up. Pelikan ended any speculation about what an Apatite inspired fountain pen might look like today with news of the upcoming Classic M205 Apatite. This is the eighth pen designed to match Pelikan’s Edelstein line of limited edition inks. The M205 Apatite joins a distinguished group which includes the M200 Golden Beryl (2021), M205 Moonstone (2020), M205 Star Ruby (2019), M205 Olivine (2018), M200 Smoky Quartz (2017), M205 Aquamarine (2016), and the M205 Amethyst (2015). Some of these models are now quite hard to come by thanks to their curb appeal and popularity. The Star Ruby (2019), Moonstone (2020), and Golden Beryl (2021) took the concept a step further and included a shimmer effect embedded within the barrel and cap, a feature which does not appear to have been included on the M205 Apatite demonstrator. Pre-orders should be going live in this week with the official release slated for some time in November 2022. Read on to learn all that we know of this new model thus far.

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News: Pelikan Hubs 2022, It’s Back!

Hubs 2022 Banner

I get a lot of electronic correspondence from around the world concerning all things Pelikan but the question that I am asked most frequently is without a doubt in regard to the Pelikan Hubs event. It is a testament to the impact that the Hubs event has had on the fine writing community. Beginning in 2014, the Hubs was conceived of as a way of bringing together fans from within the pen community from all around the globe in order to share in our combined passion for fine writing. The event became a tremendous success, growing in magnitude each year. The last event held was in 2019 and it occurred in 200 cities spread out amongst 46 countries with over 5,646 participants and future participation showed no signs of slowing down. Then COVID came and forced the cancellation of the 2020 and 2021 events to everyone’s great disappointment. In the end, Pelikan simply had no choice, and the cancellations were wholly justifiable amidst one of the biggest public health crises of the 21st century. While COVID is not gone and Monkey Pox is on the rise, there have definitely been signs of improvement and people have been able to once again gather with proper precautions. Pelikan must think so too as we awoke this morning to news that Pelikan Hubs 2022 is a go but the registration window is short so you must act now in order to not be left out. Read on for all of the details regarding Pelikan Hubs 2022.

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News: Maki-e Snow, Moon and Flowers Limited Edition

Pelikan Maki-e Snow, Moon and Flowers

Pelikan updated their Instagram account late yesterday with a post that gives us our first look at the next pen in their 2022 line-up. This one follows the infinitely more accessible M605 Tortoiseshell-Black which has been well received by the community thus far. It should not come as a surprise that we are once again looking at a super exclusive Maki-e release. This is the time of year that we usually see one of these crop up and, while Pelikan has scaled back their release schedule over the past few years, the Maki-e models remain a mainstay. This time, we have the limited edition Maki-e Snow, Moon and Flowers. Pelikan’s announcement relates the following;

“‘Snow, Moon and Flowers’ refers to winter snow, autumn moon, and spring flowers, which are natural beauties in three of the four seasons of Japan, and also conveys the tenderness in the scenery. In addition, it has become a symbolic foundation that supports the aesthetic life of the Japanese people with a calm and peaceful state of mind. ‘Snow, Moon and Flowers’ has been used in various poems and lyrics in praising the beautiful landscapes that strike people’s hearts.”

This newest limited edition will once again be built off of the M1000 chassis and is slated to launch sometime in mid-August of this year.  Like models past, this run will again be limited to just 123 pieces worldwide.

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