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Zenith CAPTAIN WINSOR
TOP
Zenith CAPTAIN WINSOR
Rs. 1,678,047
Seller
LUXE WARE (HK) LIMITED
79
HK
Jaeger-LeCoultre Gyrotourbillon 2 Platinum seems unworn full set
TOP
Jaeger-LeCoultre Gyrotourbillon 2 Platinum seems unworn full set
Price on request
Free shipping
Seller
M J GILLAN LTD
10
UK
Breguet Classique La Musical 7800BB/11/9YV
TOP
Breguet Classique La Musical 7800BB/11/9YV
Rs. 4,506,890
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
235
UK
Breguet Classique Le Reveil du Tsa
TOP
Breguet Classique Le Reveil du Tsa
Rs. 934,138
Seller
Premium Lombard
RU
Richard Mille RM 011 03 Rose Gold TI
TOP
Richard Mille RM 011 03 Rose Gold TI
Rs. 17,188,060
Free shipping
Seller
Express Watches
6
US
Chopard L’heure Du Diamant Medium Oval – 139383-1001
TOP
Chopard L’heure Du Diamant Medium Oval – 139383-1001
Rs. 4,523,656
Seller
Mall of the Watch
865
MC
Rolex Datejust
Rolex Datejust
Rs. 298,924
Seller
Private Seller
IN
Ulysse Nardin Marine Chronograph
TOP
Ulysse Nardin Marine Chronograph
Rs. 685,011
Seller
CANTELI JOYEROS SL
13
ES
Zenith ACADEMY CHRISTOPHE COLOMB EQUATION OF TIME
TOP
Zenith ACADEMY CHRISTOPHE COLOMB EQUATION OF TIME
Rs. 11,322,064
Seller
ZEGG & CERLATI
53
MC
Patek Philippe Calatrava Oman 18K Gold Manual Service 04.2018
TOP
Patek Philippe Calatrava Oman 18K Gold Manual Service 04.2018
Rs. 645,375
Seller
Timeless Watches GmbH
247
DE
Rolex GMT Master II NEW 126710 BLRO "Pepsi"
TOP
Rolex GMT Master II NEW 126710 BLRO "Pepsi"
Rs. 1,374,330
Seller
Filipucci Juweliers
449
NL
Baume & Mercier Riviera Automatic
Baume & Mercier Riviera Automatic
Rs. 59,785
Seller
Private Seller
IN
Patek Philippe Calatrava 18K Gold Very Rare Blue Dial +...
TOP
Patek Philippe Calatrava 18K Gold Very Rare Blue Dial +...
Rs. 641,928
Free shipping
Seller
Pawndeluxe
187
NL
Rolex KING MIDAS
Rolex KING MIDAS
Rs. 896,772
Seller
Private Seller
IN
Richard Mille RM 055 Bubba Watson Asia Edition
TOP
Richard Mille RM 055 Bubba Watson Asia Edition
Rs. 11,209,579
Free shipping
Seller
Express Watches
6
US
Rolex 36mm SS DATEUST Matte Black Dial Leather Strap w/ Rolex Box
TOP
Rolex 36mm SS DATEUST Matte Black Dial Leather Strap w/ Rolex Box
Rs. 261,185
Seller
Austins Watches Inc.
210
US
Omega Seamaster Automatic Date Steel band Unisex Wrist Watch
Omega Seamaster Automatic Date Steel band Unisex Wrist Watch
Rs. 92,979
Free shipping
Seller
Great Swiss Watches
IN
Zenith PILOT AERONEF 48 MM TYPE XX TOURBILLON
TOP
Zenith PILOT AERONEF 48 MM TYPE XX TOURBILLON
Rs. 3,474,168
Seller
ZEGG & CERLATI
53
MC
Omega Constellation
TOP
Omega Constellation
Rs. 545,443
Seller
Plus Ultra AG
 
CH
Rolex GMT Master II BLNR NEW 116710BLNR
TOP
Rolex GMT Master II BLNR NEW 116710BLNR
Rs. 883,190
Seller
Filipucci Juweliers
449
NL
Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch
TOP
Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch
Rs. 317,087
Seller
WatchesofMayfair.com
467
UK
Girard Perregaux 18K Chronograph 24K Gold Rotor Porcelain Dial
TOP
Girard Perregaux 18K Chronograph 24K Gold Rotor Porcelain Dial
Rs. 409,283
Free shipping
Seller
Pawndeluxe
187
NL
Breguet Classique Automatico Brillantes
TOP
Breguet Classique Automatico Brillantes
Rs. 1,115,835
Seller
Fernando Monge SA
131
ES
Richard Mille RM 011 Ivory
TOP
Richard Mille RM 011 Ivory
Rs. 14,946,130
Free shipping
Seller
Express Watches
6
US
Rolex Cellini Danaos Ladies 18K White Gold Box & Pap
TOP
Rolex Cellini Danaos Ladies 18K White Gold Box & Pap
Rs. 283,482
Free shipping
Seller
NOS 1969
279
PL
Chopard Mille Miglia Monaco Historique 2010 box & papers complete
TOP
Chopard Mille Miglia Monaco Historique 2010 box & papers complete
Rs. 352,223
Seller
Vintage & Prestige
23
UK
Zenith EL PRIMERO CHRONOMASTER 1969
TOP
Zenith EL PRIMERO CHRONOMASTER 1969
Rs. 1,085,677
Seller
ZEGG & CERLATI
53
MC
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date, Full Set
TOP
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date, Full Set
Rs. 620,676
Seller
Plus Ultra AG
 
CH
Audemars Piguet Jules Audemars Equation of Time
TOP
Audemars Piguet Jules Audemars Equation of Time
Rs. 4,566,738
Free shipping
Seller
superstudio
 
CH
Omega Seamaster 300 Co-Axial The 1957 Trilogy 60th Anniversary
TOP
Omega Seamaster 300 Co-Axial The 1957 Trilogy 60th Anniversary
Rs. 529,914
Seller
WatchesofMayfair.com
467
UK
Baume & Mercier Capeland Worldtimer - MOA 10106
TOP
Baume & Mercier Capeland Worldtimer - MOA 10106
Rs. 254,186
Free shipping
Seller
Pawndeluxe
187
NL
Breitling Bentley Mark VI  P19362  NEW 2018
TOP
Breitling Bentley Mark VI P19362 NEW 2018
Rs. 514,835
Free shipping
Seller
WatchesNorte
100
ES
Breitling Superocean 42
Breitling Superocean 42
Rs. 115,833
Seller
Watch hub
IN
Patek Philippe Chronograph 5070P-001 platinum blue dial
TOP
Patek Philippe Chronograph 5070P-001 platinum blue dial
Rs. 13,716,622
Free shipping
Seller
A Collected Man
12
UK
Tudor Heritage Advisor 79620TN
TOP
Tudor Heritage Advisor 79620TN
Rs. 293,928
Seller
Chase Hattan
26
UK
Zenith EL PRIMERO TOURBILLON
TOP
Zenith EL PRIMERO TOURBILLON
Rs. 2,727,118
Seller
ZEGG & CERLATI
53
MC
Rolex Oman Cellini, Diamonds & Sapphire, Super Rare
TOP
Rolex Oman Cellini, Diamonds & Sapphire, Super Rare
Rs. 1,316,585
Seller
Plus Ultra AG
 
CH
Rolex GMT-Master II 116759SARU june 2020 Rolex warranty
TOP
Rolex GMT-Master II 116759SARU june 2020 Rolex warranty
Rs. 5,514,552
Seller
MMC RIVIERA
6
MC
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Extreme W-Alarm
TOP
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Extreme W-Alarm
Rs. 1,326,939
Seller
OROeORA PRINTEZIS
87
GR
Chopard Mille Miglia Gran Turismo XL - Limited Edition Box &...
TOP
Chopard Mille Miglia Gran Turismo XL - Limited Edition Box &...
Rs. 292,961
Free shipping
Seller
Pawndeluxe
187
NL
Hublot Ferrari Tourbillon 408.NI.0123.RX
Hublot Ferrari Tourbillon 408.NI.0123.RX
Rs. 7,201,226
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
235
UK
Ulysse Nardin San Marco GMT
Ulysse Nardin San Marco GMT
Rs. 228,337
Free shipping
Seller
A. Grimmeissen Uhren An- und Verkauf
285
DE
Patek Philippe Nautilus 3700-001 Beyer-signed
TOP
Patek Philippe Nautilus 3700-001 Beyer-signed
Rs. 10,777,345
Free shipping
Seller
A Collected Man
12
UK
Roger Dubuis La Monegasque Moon Phase Perpetual Calendar Rose...
TOP
Roger Dubuis La Monegasque Moon Phase Perpetual Calendar Rose...
Rs. 2,111,040
Seller
RIVIERAWATCH
97
FR
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Selfwinding Jumbo
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Selfwinding Jumbo
Rs. 2,145,506
Seller
Helmut Seidl GmbH
11
DE
Patek Philippe Gondolo, Full Set
TOP
Patek Philippe Gondolo, Full Set
Rs. 808,760
Seller
Plus Ultra AG
 
CH
Rolex Oyster Precision
Rolex Oyster Precision
Rs. 120,765
Seller
Wristmenwatches
IN
Jaeger-LeCoultre Extreme Master Compressor Chronograph
TOP
Jaeger-LeCoultre Extreme Master Compressor Chronograph
Rs. 646,237
Seller
OROeORA PRINTEZIS
87
GR
Chopard Ultra Flat 18K Rose gold 40mm - 161278-5005
TOP
Chopard Ultra Flat 18K Rose gold 40mm - 161278-5005
Rs. 400,667
Free shipping
Seller
Pawndeluxe
187
NL
Rolex GMT-Master II 116758SARU
Rolex GMT-Master II 116758SARU
Rs. 11,267,225
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
235
UK
Patek Philippe Worldtimer
Patek Philippe Worldtimer
Rs. 7,970,251
Free shipping
Seller
A. Grimmeissen Uhren An- und Verkauf
285
DE
Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 Ref. 82035/000R-...
TOP
Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 Ref. 82035/000R-...
Rs. 1,910,529
Free shipping
Seller
A Collected Man
12
UK
Frederique Constant Slimline Gents Small Seconds
Straight from the manufacturer
Frederique Constant Slimline Gents Small Seconds
Rs. 59,885
BrandBoutique Member
Frederique Constant SA
Patek Philippe Nautilus
Patek Philippe Nautilus
Rs. 3,954,968
Seller
Helmut Seidl GmbH
11
DE
Blancpain Villeret Doppelchronograph / Rattrapante / Split Second
TOP
Blancpain Villeret Doppelchronograph / Rattrapante / Split Second
Rs. 639,484
Seller
Plus Ultra AG
 
CH
Omega Automatic Geneve
Omega Automatic Geneve
Rs. 37,366
Free shipping
Seller
Abhiraj Times
IN
Alpina Startimer Pilot Big Date Chronograph Stainless Steel
Alpina Startimer Pilot Big Date Chronograph Stainless Steel
Rs. 70,994
Seller
King Jewelers
 
US
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master GMT Compressor Diving - Box & inhouse...
TOP
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master GMT Compressor Diving - Box & inhouse...
Rs. 452,366
Free shipping
Seller
Pawndeluxe
187
NL
Rolex Explorer II Steve McQueen 1655
Rolex Explorer II Steve McQueen 1655
Rs. 1,954,618
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
235
UK
Patek Philippe Calatrava
Patek Philippe Calatrava
Rs. 1,171,842
Free shipping
Seller
A. Grimmeissen Uhren An- und Verkauf
285
DE
Omega Seamaster
Omega Seamaster
Rs. 111,842
Seller
BRAND SHOP LIPS
11
JP
Frederique Constant Slimline Moonphase Stars Manufacture
Straight from the manufacturer
Frederique Constant Slimline Moonphase Stars Manufacture
Rs. 370,078
BrandBoutique Member
Frederique Constant SA
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph
Rs. 2,145,506
Seller
Helmut Seidl GmbH
11
DE
Patek Philippe Beta 21, Full Set, Super Rare
TOP
Patek Philippe Beta 21, Full Set, Super Rare
Rs. 4,137,840
Seller
Plus Ultra AG
 
CH
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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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