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Cvstos Challenge-R CVCRRNSTGR Very good Steel Automatic
TOP
Cvstos R 50 Chronograph Automatic Skeleton
฿186,663
Verified Dealer
712
AT
Rolex Explorer II 16570 Unworn Steel 40mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex Explorer II 16570 black dial perfect full set like new
Price on request
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
178
FR
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Chronograph 25960BA New Yellow gold 39mm Automatic
TOP
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Chronograph Bespoke Diamond Set
Price on request
Verified Dealer
 
AU
Breguet Héritage 5400BB/12/9V6 New White gold 42mm Automatic
TOP
Breguet Héritage Chronograph
฿969,852
Verified Dealer
52
CH
Hublot Big Bang 41 mm 341.PX.7518.VR.1975 New Rose gold 41mm Automatic
TOP
Hublot Big Bang Zebra Bang, limited edition - no. 66/250
฿809,887
Verified Dealer
52
CH
Rolex Chronograph 6238 Very good Yellow gold 37mm Manual winding
TOP
Rolex Pre Daytona 6238 14k gold w certificate
฿4,107,418
Verified Dealer
9
MC
TAG Heuer Formula 1 Quartz CA1210-RO Good Steel 38mm Quartz Thailand, Bangkok
TAG Heuer Formula 1 Quartz
฿15,837
Private Seller
TH
Patek Philippe Aquanaut 5067A Good Steel
TOP
Patek Philippe Aquanaut Luce Baby Blue Diamond Bezel 5067A
฿904,543
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
50
US
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
฿948,500
Verified Dealer
734
US
Rolex Datejust 16220 Very good Steel 36mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex Datejust 16220 Silver 1997
฿179,233
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
103
DE
IWC Big Pilot IW502617 Very good Rose gold 46mm Automatic
TOP
IWC Big Pilot Perpetual Calendar Saint Exupery 46mm 18K Rose...
฿840,876
Verified Dealer
622
US
Breitling Navitimer AB0910371B1X1 New Steel 41mm Manual winding
TOP
Breitling Navitimer 806 1959 Re-Edition brandnew&sticked
฿256,900
Verified Dealer
31
AT
Omega De Ville Trésor 432.53.40.21.02.002 Very good Rose gold 40mm Manual winding
TOP
Omega Deville Tresor 432.53.40.21.02.002
฿214,234
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
1081
US
Rolex Datejust 116188 New Yellow gold 36mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex Datejust 36
฿672,130
Verified Dealer
52
CH
Rolex Chronograph 6238 Very good Steel 36mm Manual winding
TOP
Rolex Pre Daytona 6238 from 1964
฿1,568,287
Verified Dealer
9
MC
Richard Mille RM 011 RM011 Good Titanium 50mm Automatic Thailand, Bangkok
Richard Mille RM 011
฿4,239,703
Private Seller
TH
Hublot Big Bang Aero Bang 311.CI.1170.VR.DPM13 Very good Ceramic 44mm Automatic
TOP
Hublot Big Bang Depeche Mode ltd. Edition
฿576,906
Verified Dealer
28
DE
Rolex Lady-Datejust 179179 New White gold 26mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex Lady-Datejust President Mother or Pearl 179179White Gold
฿380,384
Verified Dealer
734
US
Rolex 6144 Very good Steel 32mm Manual winding
TOP
Rolex Oyster Royal Black 6144 1952
฿82,148
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
103
DE
Longines L2.650.4 Very good Steel 40mm Automatic
TOP
Longines OLYMPIC COLLECTION AVIATION AUTOMATIC CHRONO FULL SET
฿68,654
Verified Dealer
170
PL
Rolex GMT-Master 16750 Very good Steel 40mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex GMT-Master
฿631,049
Verified Dealer
15
ES
IWC Da Vinci (submodel) 9310 Very good White gold 35mm Manual winding
TOP
IWC Ultra-Slim White Gold Blue Sunburst Dial DaVinci
฿411,398
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
40
CH
Hublot Big Bang Tutti Frutti 361.CO.1110.LR.1906 New Ceramic 38mm Quartz
TOP
Hublot Big Bang Tutti Frutti 38
฿385,095
Verified Dealer
52
CH
Ulysse Nardin Perpetual Manufacture 329-10 Very good Platinum 43mm Automatic
TOP
Ulysse Nardin Perpetual Manufacture Limited Edition 329-10
฿791,872
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
1081
US
TAG Heuer Aquaracer 300M CAY2110 Very good Steel 43mm Automatic Thailand
TAG Heuer Aquaracer Automatic Chronograph
฿46,300
Private Seller
TH
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph 25940SK.OO.D002CA.01 Very good Steel 42mm Automatic
TOP
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph
฿444,178
Verified Dealer
67
US
Rolex Datejust 126303 Unworn Gold/Steel 41mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex WITH DIAMONDS - DIAMONDS EVERYWHERE
฿1,015,595
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
581
US
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date 1500 Very good Steel 34mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex Date Oyster Perpetual Silver 1973
฿112,020
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
103
DE
Tissot Ballade Powermatic 80 COSC T108.408.16.057.00 New Steel Automatic
TOP
Tissot Ballade Powermatic 80 COSC
฿28,005
Verified Dealer
183
ES
Omega Speedmaster 3559.32.00 Very good Steel 42mm Automatic Thailand, Bangkok
Omega Speedmaster
฿189,000
Verified Dealer
 
TH
Piaget 9131 Very good White gold 25mm Manual winding
TOP
Piaget White Gold Opal Onyx Diamonds Bracelet Watch
฿378,919
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
40
CH
Breitling Transocean Chronograph Unitime RB0510U4/BB63 New Rose gold 46mm Automatic
TOP
Breitling Transocean Chronograph Unitime 45
฿624,244
Verified Dealer
52
CH
Audemars Piguet Millenary 26150ST.OO.D084CU.01 Very good Steel 42mm Automatic
TOP
Audemars Piguet Millenary Dual-Time Maserati Limited Edition...
฿268,189
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
1081
US
Omega Constellation 2852 Fair Gold/Steel 35mm Automatic Thailand, Bangkok
Omega Constellation
฿28,000
Private Seller
 
TH
Breguet Classique Complications 5317pt/12/9v6 Very good Platinum 40mm Automatic
TOP
Breguet Classique 5317PT Platinium Tourbillon Power Reserva...
Price on request
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
502
ES
IWC Portuguese Automatic IW500104 Very good Platinum 42mm Automatic
TOP
IWC Portugieser 7 Days ( Limited Edition ) Platinum
฿802,814
Verified Dealer
42
NL
Rolex Air King Precision 5500 Very good Steel 34mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex Air King Precision Silver 5500 1987
฿112,020
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
103
DE
Blancpain Léman Moonphase 2360 1191A 55A Very good Steel 33mm Automatic
TOP
Blancpain Léman Moonphase Diamonds Mother of Pearl - 2360...
฿190,397
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
719
NL
Tudor Prince Date 79410P Good Steel 46mm Automatic Thailand, Chatuchak
Tudor Prince Date Good Condition Tudor Prince Stainless Steel...
฿43,155
Private Seller
TH
Zenith El Primero Chronograph 01.0500.420 Very good Steel 46mm Manual winding Thailand, Chatuchak
Zenith El Primero Chronograph in Very Good Condition
฿89,900
Private Seller
TH
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph 26405CE.OO.A002CA.02 Very good Ceramic 44mm Automatic Thailand, Bangkok
TOP
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph in FULL Black...
฿935,000
Private Seller
TH
IWC Big Pilot IW500916 Fair Steel 46mm Automatic Thailand, Pattaya City
IWC Big Pilot
฿225,000
Private Seller
TH
TAG Heuer Aquaracer 500M WAJ2112.BA0870 Good Steel 43mm Automatic Thailand
TAG Heuer Aquaracer 500M
฿40,500
Private Seller
TH
Tissot Le Locle T0064073605300 Unworn Gold/Steel 39.3mm Automatic Thailand, Bangkok
Tissot T0064073605300
฿98,389
Private Seller
TH
Omega Constellation 168.0056 Good Steel 34.8mm Automatic Thailand, Muang District
Omega Constellation
฿45,000
Private Seller
TH
IWC Ingenieur Automatic IW323608 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic Thailand, MueangSamutPrakan
IWC Ingenieur Automatic
฿184,453
Private Seller
TH
Rolex Datejust 126334 Very good Steel 41mm Automatic Thailand, Bangkok
Rolex Datejust
฿420,000
Private Seller
TH
Patek Philippe Golden Ellipse 3589 Very good Yellow gold 32mm Manual winding Thailand, 10110
Patek Philippe Golden Ellipse
฿396,729
Private Seller
TH
Mido Multifort M005.431.11.441.00 Good Steel 42mm Automatic Thailand, Muang Nonthaburi
Mido Multifort
฿16,800
Private Seller
TH
Oris Aquis Small Second 01 743 7733 4135-07 8 24 05PEB Good Steel 45.50mm Automatic Thailand, Bangkok
Oris Aquis Date Small Second
฿41,000
Private Seller
TH
Rolex Day-Date 40 228238 Very good Yellow gold Automatic Thailand, bangkok
Rolex day date 40 yellow gold champagne Roman dial
฿1,150,000
Private Seller
TH
Hublot Big Bang Caviar 346.CD.1800.LR.1922 Very good Ceramic 41mm Automatic Thailand, Bangkok
Hublot Big Bang Caviar
฿398,729
Private Seller
TH
Hublot Classic 1621.2 Good Gold/Steel 37mm Quartz Thailand, PHRA KANONG
Hublot Classic
฿78,013
Private Seller
TH
Hublot Classic Fusion Ultra-Thin 545.NX.1270.LR New Titanium 42mm Manual winding
TOP
Hublot Classic Fusion 42 ultra-thin
฿276,729
Verified Dealer
52
CH
Rolex Datejust 16233 Very good Gold/Steel 36mm Automatic
TOP
Rolex Datejust Two Tone 16233 Light Brown 1993
฿220,307
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
103
DE
Piaget Polo 7131 C 701 Very good White gold 25mm Quartz
TOP
Piaget Polo, White & Yellow Gold, Onyx Dial, Full Set
฿433,050
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
40
CH
Breitling Superocean A17360 Very good Steel 42mm Automatic Thailand, Bangkok
Breitling Superocean Chronimetre Automatic
฿62,000
Private Seller
TH
Rolex Datejust 278341RBR New Gold/Steel 31mm Automatic Thailand, Bangkok
Rolex Datejust
฿410,000
Verified Dealer
 
TH
IWC IWC Very good Yellow gold 33mm Manual winding
TOP
IWC vintage 14K Gold Cal 61 1940
฿74,643
Verified Dealer
98
HU
Breguet Type XX - XXI - XXII 3880ST/H2/3XV New Steel 44mm Automatic
TOP
Breguet Type XXII Flyback
฿498,491
Verified Dealer
221
ES
Tissot Seastar 1000 T120.407.11.051.00 New Steel 43mm Automatic
TOP
Tissot Seastar 1000 Automático Powermatic 80
฿19,977
Verified Dealer
183
ES
Girard Perregaux Ferrari 8020 Very good Steel 38mm Automatic
TOP
Girard Perregaux Ferrari Chronograph Automatic Galactic Deep...
฿82,111
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
719
NL
Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch 3572.50.00 Very good Steel 42mm Manual winding Thailand, Bangkok
Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch
฿128,000
Private Seller
 
TH
Tudor Black Bay Bronze 79250BB Unworn Bronze 43mm Automatic Thailand, Bangkok
TOP
Tudor Black Bay Bronze
฿135,000
Private Seller
TH

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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