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Franck Muller Conquistador GPG 10800 SC DT GPG Very good Gold/Steel 46mm Automatic
TOP
Franck Muller Conquistador GPG Grand Prix Pinkgold
RM49,695
Verified Dealer
157
DE
IWC Da Vinci Automatic IW358101 New Steel 40.4mm Automatic
TOP
IWC Da Vinci Automatic 150 Years
RM32,670
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
48
AU
Rolex Submariner 6205 Very good Steel Automatic
TOP
Rolex Rare Early Submariner 'Pre Sub' Dial, pencil hands
RM351,740
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
5
UK
TAG Heuer Carrera Heuer-02T CAR5A5Z.FC6377 Very good Rose gold 45mm
TOP
TAG Heuer Carrera Tourbillon Heuer 02T CAR5A5Z.FC6377
RM83,043
Verified Dealer
47
CH
IWC Big Pilot IW502702 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic
IWC IW502702 Big Pilot Annual Calendar Spitfire SS / Grey Dial...
RM60,768
Verified Dealer
587
US
Rolex Chronograph 6238 Very good Steel 36mm Manual winding
TOP
Rolex Pre Daytona 6238 from 1964
RM211,424
Verified Dealer
9
MC
Tudor Black Bay 79230G Unworn Steel 41mm Automatic
Tudor Black Bay Harrods 2020 - Unworn
RM24,289
Verified Dealer
UK
Omega 323.21.40.44.02.001 Good Steel 40mm Automatic
Omega スピードマスター トリプルカレンダー 323.21.40.44.02.001
RM12,026
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
1390
JP
Tudor Black Bay 79220R Very good Steel 41mm Automatic Malaysia, Kota kinabalu
Tudor Black Bay
RM10,800
Private Seller
MY
Omega Constellation 131.20.28.60.52.002 New Steel 28mm Quartz
Omega Constellation Manhattan Quartz 28 mm 131.20.28.60.52.002
RM18,414
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
505
TR
Tissot PRS 516 T044.417.21.051.00 Good Steel 42mm Quartz Malaysia, Petaling Jaya
Tissot PRS 516
RM935
Private Seller
MY
Patek Philippe Calatrava 5212A-001 Very good Steel 40mm Automatic Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur
Patek Philippe Calatrava
RM192,575
Private Seller
MY
Rolex Oyster Perpetual 39 114300 Good Steel 39mm Automatic Malaysia, Johor Bahru
Rolex Oyster Perpetual 39
RM24,137
Private Seller
MY
Tudor Black Bay Chrono 79350 Good Steel 41mm Automatic Malaysia, Johor Bahru
Tudor Black Bay Chrono
RM13,000
Private Seller
MY
Rolex Datejust 126334 Unworn Steel 41mm Automatic Malaysia
Rolex Limited Unworn 41mm Blue Dial Datejust full Box and paper
RM47,000
Private Seller
MY
Rolex Daytona 16523 Very good Gold/Steel 40mm Automatic Malaysia, Seri Kembangan
Rolex Daytona
RM52,000
Private Seller
MY
Rolex Submariner Date 116610LN Very good Steel 40mm Automatic Malaysia, Petaling Jaya,
Rolex Submariner Date
RM43,000
Private Seller
MY
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph 26470ST.OO.A028CR.01 Very good Steel 42mm Automatic Malaysia, Cheras
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph
RM96,408
Private Seller
MY
Longines Legend Diver L33744500 Very good Yellow gold 36mm Automatic Malaysia, Shah Alam
Longines Legend Diver 36mm
RM7,703
Private Seller
MY
Patek Philippe Aquanaut 5167A-012 Unworn Steel 40.8mm Automatic Malaysia
Patek Philippe Aquanaut Singapore limited edition
RM425,000
Private Seller
MY
Omega Constellation 14393 61 SC Fair Automatic Malaysia, KUALA LUMPUR
Omega CONSTELLATION PIE PAN
RM5,349
Private Seller
MY
IWC Pilot Mark IW324703 Very good Steel 41mm Automatic Malaysia, Gelugor
IWC Mark XVIII limited edition
RM19,000
Private Seller
MY
Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 232.30.46.21.01.002 Good Steel 45.5mm Automatic Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur
Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 45.5mm Co-Axial 8500
RM16,000
Private Seller
MY
Tissot PRC 200 T055.417.16.057.00 Unworn Steel 42mm Quartz Malaysia, KUALA LUMPUR
Tissot PRC 200
RM1,770
Private Seller
MY
Patek Philippe Calatrava 3796 Good Rose gold 31mm Manual winding Malaysia, johor bahru
Patek Philippe Calatrava
RM39,000
Private Seller
MY
Rolex Chronograph 6238 Very good Yellow gold 37mm Manual winding
TOP
Rolex Pre Daytona 6238 14k gold w certificate
RM553,729
Verified Dealer
9
MC
Longines HydroConquest L3.781.4.56.6 Good Steel Automatic Malaysia, Shah Alam
Longines HydroConquest Longines Hydroconquest
RM3,800
Private Seller
MY
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date 15203 Good Gold/Steel Automatic Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date 18k Gold
RM14,122
Private Seller
MY
Rolex Datejust 16233 Very good Gold/Steel 36mm Automatic Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur
Rolex Datejust
RM26,734
Private Seller
MY
Rolex Day-Date 40 228239 Unworn White gold 40mm Automatic
Rolex White Gold Day-Date 40 Black Stick Dial 228239 Unworn
RM167,968
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
327
US
Zenith El Primero Chronomaster 03.2040.4061/69.C496 Very good Steel 42mm Automatic Malaysia, Petaling Jaya
Zenith El Primero Chronomaster
RM24,000
Private Seller
MY
Tudor Black Bay GMT 79830RB Unworn Steel Automatic Malaysia, KUALA LUMPUR
Tudor Black Bay GMT
RM18,000
Private Seller
MY
Maurice Lacroix Masterpiece Squelette MP6028-PVC01-002-1 Unworn Steel 45mm Automatic Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur
Maurice Lacroix Masterpiece Skeleton MP6028-PVC01-002-1
RM27,000
Private Seller
MY
Tissot Heritage Visodate T118.410.16.057.00 Very good Steel 40mm Quartz Malaysia, 47600
Tissot Heritage Visodate
RM1,100
Private Seller
MY
Rolex Cellini 4014 Very good Yellow gold 23mm Manual winding Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur
Rolex Cellini
RM10,000
Private Seller
MY
Tudor Black Bay Chrono 79363N Unworn Gold/Steel Automatic Malaysia, klang
Tudor Black Bay Chrono Tudor S&G
RM26,800
Private Seller
MY
Longines Présence L4.636.2 Unworn Gold/Steel Quartz Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur
Longines Présence
RM5,863
Private Seller
MY
IWC Pilot Chronograph IW377701 Very good Steel 43mm Automatic Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur
IWC PILOT CHRONOGRAPH
RM16,800
Private Seller
MY
Rolex Lady-Datejust 179179 New White gold 26mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex Lady-Datejust President Mother or Pearl 179179White Gold
RM51,289
Verified Dealer
737
US
IWC Pilot Mark IW327007 Very good Steel 40mm Automatic Malaysia, KUALA LUMPUR
IWC Pilot 'Tribute to Mark XI' Mark VIII
RM18,988
Private Seller
MY
IWC Big Pilot IW502617 Very good Rose gold 46mm Automatic
TOP
IWC Big Pilot Perpetual Calendar Saint Exupery 46mm 18K Rose...
RM113,379
Verified Dealer
624
US
Rolex Datejust 126234 Unworn Steel 36mm Automatic Malaysia, Kulai
Rolex DateJust 36mm Blue Jubilee Diamond
RM51,405
Private Seller
MY
Omega De Ville Trésor 432.53.40.21.02.002 Very good Red gold 40mm Manual winding Malaysia, Petaling Jaya
Omega De Ville Trésor
RM34,888
Private Seller
MY
Zenith Pilot Type 20 GMT 03.2430.693/21.C723 Very good Steel Automatic Malaysia, Bukit Mertajam
Zenith Pilot Type 20 GMT Ref: 03.2430.693/21.C723
RM16,575
Private Seller
MY
Omega 2471/1 Fair 34.5mm Manual winding Malaysia, KUALA LUMPUR
Omega Cosmic Triple Calendar Moon-Phase 2471-1 cal.381
RM14,550
Private Seller
MY
Patek Philippe Nautilus 5712g Unworn White gold 40mm Automatic Malaysia, kuala lumpur
TOP
Patek Philippe Nautilus
RM285,926
Private Seller
MY
Breitling AB0118A61C1P2 Unworn Steel Automatic Malaysia, Johor
Breitling Premier B01 Chronograph
RM23,751
Private Seller
MY
Breitling Navitimer 01 (46 MM) AB012721/BD09 Very good Steel Automatic Malaysia, Ipoh
Breitling Navitimer 01 (46 MM)
RM22,000
Private Seller
MY
Maurice Lacroix Masterpiece MP7018-PS101-110 Very good Gold/Steel 43.5mm Manual winding Malaysia, Miri
Maurice Lacroix Masterpiece
RM11,800
Private Seller
MY
Ball Engineer Master II Diver DC1028C-S2J-BK Unworn Steel 43.8mm Automatic Malaysia, Petaling Jaya
Ball DC1028C-S2J-BK
RM9,500
Private Seller
MY
Rolex Datejust 126334 Very good 41mm Automatic Malaysia, Puchong, Selangor
TOP
Rolex Datejust 41 | 2019 | Wimbledon Dial | White Rolesor |...
RM48,000
Private Seller
MY
IWC Portofino Chronograph IW391008 Good Steel 42mm Automatic Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur
IWC Portofino Chronograph
RM18,000
Private Seller
MY
TAG Heuer Aquaracer 300M CAP2110.BA0833 Unworn Steel 42mm Automatic Malaysia, kuala lumpur
TAG Heuer Aquaracer 300M
RM11,008
Private Seller
MY
Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 522.32.40.20.04.001 New Steel 39.5mm Automatic
TOP
Omega Olympic 2008 Beijing China 522.32.40.20.04.001
RM127,891
Verified Dealer
737
US
IWC Big Pilot IW500401 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur
IWC Big Pilot
RM38,574
Private Seller
MY
Tudor Clair de Rose 35500-0001 Very good Steel 26mm Automatic Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur
Tudor Clair de Rose
RM8,500
Private Seller
MY
Rado HyperChrome R32087102 Very good Rose gold Automatic Malaysia, Kelantan
Rado Hyperchrome
RM5,999
Private Seller
MY
Omega Speedmaster Date 3513.30.00 Very good Steel 40mm Automatic Malaysia, Puchong
TOP
Omega SPEEDMASTER TRIPLE DATE
RM10,888
Private Seller
MY
Tissot Seastar 1000 T120.407.17.041.00 New Steel 43mm Automatic
TOP
Tissot Seastar 1000 Automático Powermatic 80
RM2,592
Verified Dealer
183
ES
Rolex GMT-Master II 116710LN Very good Steel 40mm Automatic
Rolex GMT-Master II 116710LN ( 12/2011 EU ) 2018 Full serviced
RM51,592
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
NL
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph 25940SK.OO.D002CA.01 Very good Steel 42mm Automatic
TOP
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph
RM59,891
Verified Dealer
67
US
Rolex Datejust 126303 Unworn Gold/Steel 41mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex WITH DIAMONDS - DIAMONDS EVERYWHERE
RM136,938
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
582
US
Longines L2.650.4 Very good Steel 40mm Automatic
TOP
Longines OLYMPIC COLLECTION AVIATION AUTOMATIC CHRONO FULL SET
RM9,263
Verified Dealer
171
PL
Ulysse Nardin Perpetual Manufacture 329-10 Very good Platinum 43mm Automatic
TOP
Ulysse Nardin Perpetual Manufacture Limited Edition 329-10
RM106,772
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
1091
US

Swiss Watches: World-Renowned Timepieces

Swiss watches are synonymous with precision and luxury. The most well-known names in the business, with few exceptions, all hail from this Alpine country. Rolex, Omega, IWC, and Breitling all represent tradition and high quality.


Everything to Know About Swiss Watches in This Article

  • Buying advice for Swiss-made watches
  • Watches in different price ranges
  • Manufacturers, collections, and models
  • History of the Swiss watch industry

Which Swiss Watch Should I Buy?

If you want to buy a Swiss watch, you have a wide range of options. The right way to find out which watch is best for you is to ask yourself the following question: How much do I want to spend?

A new, brand-name Swiss watch with a mechanical movement can cost as little as 1,000 euros. You can find watches from manufacturers such as Chronoswiss, Maurice Lacroix, Oris, and Raymond Weil in this price range. Some series from these manufacturers are more expensive, however. For example, Raymond Weil's Nabucco chronograph costs around 3,000 euros new with a titanium case. TAG Heuer and Tissot also have a large selection of watches available for less than 5,000 euros.

Rolex and Omega are probably the most well-known representatives of Swiss luxury watches. The legendary Omega Speedmaster Professional is available in many different variations for less than 5,000 euros. The version closest to the original Moonwatch chronograph, which you can find under reference number 311.30.42.30.01.005, costs around 3,500 euros and has a stainless steel case. The material certainly influences the price, as cases made of precious metals are much more expensive than those made of stainless steel.

An Omega diving watch from the Seamaster collection with a gold case costs around 15,000 euros. The Rolex Submariner without a date display and a stainless steel case costs around 6,500 euros new. You should be prepared to spend at least 23,000 euros for a yellow gold Submariner, and 25,000 euros for a Rolex Daytona.

Patek Philippe's Nautilus is one of the most sought-after and expensive stainless steel sports watches from Switzerland. Without any complications, the women's version costs 20,000 euros, and the men's 25,000 euros. With a white gold or platinum case, the price jumps to 140,000 euros. The Calatrava, also from Patek Philippe, is the definition of a classic, elegant dress watch. New, the most popular version costs around 15,000 euros.

If you decide to go with a watch from Breguet or Blancpain, expect prices over 100,000 euros. Cases made of precious metals, diamond-set cases and straps, and intricate complications such a tourbillon increase the value of such watches. The newcomer Hublot also has some watches in this price range. The futuristic MP-05 LaFerrari watch usually costs 200,000 euros. The version with a sapphire glass case is over double the price, costing more than 400,000 euros.


Watches: Iconic Exports

Watches are a defining part of Switzerland's cultural image. They're more iconic than the banks and the cheese; only chocolate ranked "more Swiss" than watches according to a survey of participants from 15 different countries.

About 30 million watches leave the production halls of this little Alpine country every year. The variety amongst these watches is impressive. They range from traditional gold watches with complications such as a:

  • Moon phase display
  • Perpetual calendar
  • Minute repeater
  • Double chronograph

to diving and pilot's watches. Some of the Swiss companies even produce high-tech smartwatches. Many of these watches function as status symbols, ignoring their actual intended functions. Many diving watches from the Seamaster and Submariner collections will never go underwater, and only a small number of the pilot's watches sold by IWC or Breitling are actually worn in the cockpit. These watches work equally well as a tool watch or a luxury lifestyle object.

There are also mass market affordable watches, such as the famous quartz-powered Swatch with its bright and colorful plastic case. There are now mechanical versions with a simple 51-piece movement. The typical Swatch looks somewhat cheap and is not taken seriously by many watch fans, but certain models have sold at high prices as vintage watches. Furthermore, the Swatch is significantly responsible for helping the Swiss watch industry survive the Quartz Crisis of the 1970s and 80s. The Swatch watch, trendy and colorful, broke Swiss watches out of their conservative, stuffy image and attracted a new target audience. Above all, young people were attracted to this bright and simple watch.

However, luxury watches are what people think of when they think of Swiss watches. Switzerland leads the world in watch exports if you don't rank by number of timepieces. While only about 2% of watches sold worldwide come from Switzerland, they are worth 60% of the total value.

Many well-known brands with long watchmaking traditions belong to the Swatch Group (market share: 18%) or to luxury goods concerns like Richemont (market share: 16%) or Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH, market share: 5%). Rolex is the largest independent Swiss luxury watch manufacturer (market share: 12%). Their independent status greatly contributes to their outstanding reputation.


Overview of the Most Important Swiss Luxury Watch Manufacturers

Manufacturer Founding year Location of headquarters Parent group
Audemars Piguet 1875 Le Brassus Independent
Blancpain 1735 Le Brassus Swatch Group
Breguet 1775 L'Abbaye Swatch Group
Breitling 1884 Grenchen Independent
Chopard 1860 Geneva Independent
Hublot 1980 Nyon LVMH
IWC 1868 Schaffhausen Richemont
Jaeger-LeCoultre 1833 Le Sentier Richemont
Longines 1832 Saint-Imier Swatch Group
Omega 1848 Biel/Bienne Swatch Group
Patek Philippe 1851 Geneva Independent
Rolex 1905 Geneva Independent
TAG Heuer 1860 La Chaux-de-Fonds LVMH
Vacheron Constantin 1755 Plan-les-Ouates Richemont
Zenith 1865 Le Locle LVMH

Rolex

Rolex is number one amongst the large manufacturers. The Geneva-based manufacturer has been in business since 1905. Rolex produces some of the most famous and beloved watch models in the world, such as the Submariner, Daytona, and Datejust.

The Submariner is the definition of a diving watch, the Daytona is one of the most famous chronographs, and the Datejust embodies elegance. Rolex's pilot's watch is the Air King, and their GMT Master II displays a second time zone. With the invention of the perpetual rotor, Rolex significantly contributed to the breakthrough of the automatic watch in the 1930s. Every year, the manufacturer sells around 800,000 watches featuring their iconic five-point crown. Rolex doesn't publish any official sales numbers. However, since Rolex has their watches certified by the Official Swiss Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC), we can calculate how many Rolex watches are produced based on the COSC's publications.


Omega

The most famous man to wear a Rolex is undoubtedly James Bond. He completes many of his missions with a Submariner on his wrist. However, the British secret agent switched to Omega, a member of the Swatch Group, in 1995. Omega plays a central role in the Swatch Group's company strategy, as they see the brand as a strong competitor for Rolex. Rolex isn't the only manufacturer with legendary watch models; Omega has their own to be proud of. The Seamaster is a diving watch collection that's been in production since 1948. The famous French oceanographer Jacques Cousteau wore a Seamaster. Another iconic Omega watch is the Speedmaster Professional. "Speedy," as it's nicknamed by fans, was the official NASA watch on the Apollo missions, making it the first watch on the Moon in 1969. The so-called Moonwatch is available today, almost unchanged from the original version, but now features a modern Co-Axial caliber and comes in many special limited editions. There's also the De Ville series, which showcases Omega's classic side.


International Watch Company (IWC)

IWC, based in Schaffhausen, also offers elegant Swiss watches, such as the Portugieser. They're even more famous for their pilot's watches, though; their Big Pilot watch and the Mark series are considered excellent pilot's watches. The Mark 11 was the official service watch of Royal Air Force pilots for decades.


Breitling

Breitling is a strong competitor for IWC in the realm of pilot's watches. Breitling's Navitimer is considered one of the most important pilot's watches. The watch, which was introduced in 1952, has a special slide rule function. It has two logarithmic scales on the dial which you can turn to perform various calculations, such as distance and fuel consumption. Breitling also offers powerful diving watches with their Superocean series and some versions of the Avenger. Rolex, Omega, IWC, and Breitling are all considered to be on the same level, thus Breitling also has a conservative, elegant line as well, the Transocean. Besides mechanical timepieces, Breitling also offers quartz watches with refined technology, such as the Emergency with an integrated distress beacon.


Patek Philippe

One rung higher on the luxury watch ladder is Patek Philippe. It's clear from the start that this manufacturer is a bit different: Most of their cases are made of solid gold. In the Swiss watch industry, steel cases are used around 50% of the time. Precious metals like gold and platinum are only used around 2% of the time. Patek's Calatrava collection is a symbol of the company and the epitome of a stylish dress watch. This watch collection debuted in 1932 and was inspired by the Bauhaus art movement. Patek Philippe's Nautilus also has a special position in their portfolio. It's a stainless steel sports watch waterproof to 120 m (12 bar) – all unusual qualities for a Patek watch. The company has a long history of watchmaking. The independent family business has existed under this name since 1851. Until 2009, Patek Philippe used the Geneva Seal as a symbol of high Swiss quality. Now, the company uses their own seal with even stricter standards.


Blancpain, Breguet, Jaeger-LeCoultre

Blancpain and Breguet have been in business even longer. Today, they're both members of the Swatch Group. Abraham-Louis Breguet founded his company in 1775. He's responsible for countless important watchmaking inventions, such as the tourbillon. Blancpain has been around since 1735. Their most famous series is the Fifty Fathoms diving watch. Brands such as Patek Philippe, Breguet, and Blancpain, are representative of the conservative values of the Swiss watch industry. This applies to Jaeger-LeCoultre as well. This manufacturer has been producing high-quality watches since 1833. Their Reverso is one of the most popular rectangular watches.


Hublot

Hublot takes an entirely different approach. This relatively new manufacturer plays the role of the rebel most excellently. One distinctive Hublot feature is their unusual, square-edged porthole design, which occasionally borders on the bizarre. Legibility isn't Hublot's main concern. Instead, they show a preference for the use of unusual materials such as ceramic or titanium. With their patented Magic Gold alloy, Hublot broke new ground. Magic Gold is an incredibly scratch-resistant alloy composed of gold and ceramic. Magic Gold comes quite close to the ideal, everlasting case material. Hublot was founded in 1980. In 2005, under new leadership, they introduced the Big Bang series. The Big Bang caused a sharp increase in sales, catapulting this Genevan manufacturer into the same league as other well-known Swiss brands. The somewhat calmer Hublot alternative to the Big Bang is the Classic Fusion.


Audemars Piguet

Hublot is not without precedent. Audemars Piguet's Royal Oak, introduced in 1972, as well as their Royal Oak Offshore, inspired Hublot's designs. The wide bezel with visible screws was directly influenced by the Royal Oak.


TAG Heuer

When it comes to TAG Heuer, it's all about timing. They patented their first stopwatch mechanism in 1882. TAG Heuer has dedicated themselves to the art of racing ever since – it's not a coincidence that their most well-known series is called the Carrera. Even the rectangularMonaco is a legend amongst racing watches. The actor Steve McQueen wore a Monaco in the film Le Mans.


Tissot

Watches from TAG Heuer are in a moderate price range. This applies to Tissot as well. Aside from classic mechanical watches, Tissot offers modern quartz watches as well. The T-Touch Expert Solar is solar powered. It's a multi-function watch with background lighting, a second time zone display, chronograph function, timer, alarm, compass, barometer function, and many other extras. The watch has a titanium case and is waterproof to 100 m (10 bar). The T-Touch Expert Solar has features that only an electric-powered watch can offer. Such an array of functions is impossible for a mechanical watch, especially one that costs less than 1,000 euros.

Other manufacturers also combine Swiss quality with moderate prices, such as Longines, Raymond Weil, or Maurice Lacroix. These companies often use calibers from the world's largest ébauche manufacturer, ETA SA Manufacture Horlogère Suisse, which is also based in Switzerland. The Swiss company Sellita also offers movements that can be found in the watches of many famous manufacturers. Only a few brands produce their own calibers, such as Rolex and Patek Philippe. !Zenith has some of the most important automatic chronograph movements in watch history. The fast-paced El Primero caused a stir when it was released in 1969; it even had a watch named after it.


Top 10 Swiss Luxury Watch Manufacturers According to Production Numbers

Manufacturer Number of watches produced per year
Rolex 800,000
Omega 700,000
Breitling 170,000
IWC 100,000
Chopard 80,000
Jaeger-LeCoultre 75,000
Patek Philippe 60,000
Hublot 40,000
Audemars Piguet 37,000
Zenith 35,000

Post-Quartz Crisis Revival

The Swiss watch industry began in the 18th century. Up until the second half of the 19th century, Switzerland was considered a place where it was easy to produce watches affordably. IWC, with roots in the United States, based their business model on this concept.

After many successful years, the industry suffered in the 1970s and 80s during the Quartz Crisis. Cheap, mass-produced quartz watches produced in Asia endangered traditional Swiss production. Some manufacturers disappeared forever and many workers lost their jobs. Yet surprisingly, Swiss watches later experienced a renaissance which has lasted to this day. The fascination with the technical genius that goes into mechanical watches enthralls watch lovers all over the world. Many manufacturers with longer histories are no longer independent, however. Merging with a large concern, such as the Swatch Group, Richemont, or LVMH, saved many of these manufacturers from going under.

Unexpected competition has popped up since then. The German town of Glashütte was trapped behind the Iron Curtain in East Germany until 1990. Watches have been produced in Glashütte since the mid-19th century, but they were far from being luxury watches when Germany was divided. Now, other manufacturers such as A. Lange & Söhne and Glashütte Original have established themselves in Glashütte, making Glashütte watches true competition for Swiss manufacturers.


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