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Jaeger-LeCoultre Q2958102
TOP
Jaeger-LeCoultre Q2958102
S$ 9,683
Free shipping
Seller
Deluxe ( Asia ) Ltd
11
HK
Tudor Heritage Black Bay Dark
TOP
Tudor Heritage Black Bay Dark
S$ 4,539
Seller
Manufaktura
RU
Rolex 178274
Rolex 178274
S$ 8,480
Seller
Heng Seng Pawnshop Co. Pte Ltd
SG
Piaget Rare Massive Mens 1970 Piaget Polo Diamond Dial 100%...
TOP
Piaget Rare Massive Mens 1970 Piaget Polo Diamond Dial 100%...
S$ 22,693
Free shipping
Seller
Watch Hunter
 
US
Hublot Big Bang King  Min Repeater NEW 65% off
TOP
Hublot Big Bang King Min Repeater NEW 65% off
S$ 205,544
Seller
Raffi Boyadjian Watches Inc.
8
US
Hublot Big Bang Unico Magic Sapphire
TOP
Hublot Big Bang Unico Magic Sapphire
S$ 69,026
Seller
WatchesofMayfair.com
206
UK
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept Schumacher Laptimer 26221FT....
TOP
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept Schumacher Laptimer 26221FT....
S$ 271,349
Seller
TimeWorld
20
CH
Rolex Cellini 18 K Gold 750 Weissgold Handaufzug Manual
TOP
Rolex Cellini 18 K Gold 750 Weissgold Handaufzug Manual
S$ 7,720
Seller
Timeless Watches GmbH
107
DE
Frederique Constant Slimline Gents Small Seconds
Frederique Constant Slimline Gents Small Seconds
S$ 1,120
BrandBoutique Member
Frederique Constant SA
Zenith El Primero Chronograph frisch revisioniert von Zenith  TOP
TOP
Zenith El Primero Chronograph frisch revisioniert von Zenith TOP
S$ 5,399
Free shipping
Seller
Gute Zeiten Leer
30
DE
Rolex Daytona 16520 by BEYER Series R Floating Tropical dial...
TOP
Rolex Daytona 16520 by BEYER Series R Floating Tropical dial...
Price on request
Seller
Watches Management
8
IT
Rolex 68273
Rolex 68273
S$ 5,200
Seller
Heng Seng Pawnshop Co. Pte Ltd
SG
IWC VINTAGE  1940 PLATINUM EMERALD DIAMOND CONCEALED LADIES
TOP
IWC VINTAGE 1940 PLATINUM EMERALD DIAMOND CONCEALED LADIES
S$ 55,013
Free shipping
Seller
Watch Hunter
 
US
Audemars Piguet Concept CW1
TOP
Audemars Piguet Concept CW1
S$ 254,437
Seller
Raffi Boyadjian Watches Inc.
8
US
Rolex Ladies 169622 Yachtmaster - Platinum Dial / Platinum Bezel
TOP
Rolex Ladies 169622 Yachtmaster - Platinum Dial / Platinum Bezel
S$ 5,494
Free shipping
Seller
SD & CO LLC
21
US
Rolex 1988 SS GMT Master ll "Fat Lady" w/ Box, Papers,...
TOP
Rolex 1988 SS GMT Master ll "Fat Lady" w/ Box, Papers,...
S$ 15,122
Seller
Austins Watches Inc.
101
US
Vacheron Constantin Lady Platinum Diamonds
TOP
Vacheron Constantin Lady Platinum Diamonds
S$ 8,864
Seller
LE MUSE sas
58
IT
Frederique Constant Slimline Moonphase Stars Manufacture
Frederique Constant Slimline Moonphase Stars Manufacture
S$ 6,922
BrandBoutique Member
Frederique Constant SA
Zenith EL PRIMERO TOURBILLON
TOP
Zenith EL PRIMERO TOURBILLON
S$ 60,033
Seller
ZEGG & CERLATI
20
MC
Rolex Rare Vintage Bubbleback / Radium Dial / Steel / Ca.1940
TOP
Rolex Rare Vintage Bubbleback / Radium Dial / Steel / Ca.1940
S$ 6,446
Free shipping
Seller
VintageCaliber GmbH
32
DE
Audemars Piguet T3
Audemars Piguet T3
S$ 48,000
Seller
Heng Seng Pawnshop Co. Pte Ltd
SG
Hublot Big Bang Unico Sapphire 411.JX.4802.RT
TOP
Hublot Big Bang Unico Sapphire 411.JX.4802.RT
S$ 66,800
Seller
Chrono95
SG
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Selfwinding in 18-carat yellow gold
TOP
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Selfwinding in 18-carat yellow gold
S$ 46,737
Seller
Fino Pte Ltd
SG
Rolex Mens 116400 Milgauss - White Dial - Oyster Band - Mint...
TOP
Rolex Mens 116400 Milgauss - White Dial - Oyster Band - Mint...
S$ 7,838
Seller
SD & CO LLC
21
US
Rolex 2008 40mm SS Explorer ll  White Dial - 3186 Caliber...
TOP
Rolex 2008 40mm SS Explorer ll White Dial - 3186 Caliber...
S$ 8,245
Seller
Austins Watches Inc.
101
US
Omega Seamaster 300M 2636.50.91 - Serviced By Omega
TOP
Omega Seamaster 300M 2636.50.91 - Serviced By Omega
S$ 20,351
Seller
Mark Worthington Jewellers
20
UK
Omega Seamaster Stainless Steel Men FULL SET BOX AND PAPERS
Omega Seamaster Stainless Steel Men FULL SET BOX AND PAPERS
S$ 1,980
Seller
Private seller
SG
Girard Perregaux WW.TC ZEGG & CERLATI - LIMITED EDITION
TOP
Girard Perregaux WW.TC ZEGG & CERLATI - LIMITED EDITION
S$ 15,955
Seller
ZEGG & CERLATI
20
MC
Rolex Sea-Dweller  red dsr mark 3
TOP
Rolex Sea-Dweller red dsr mark 3
S$ 55,601
Seller
Stella Dial the watch company srl
22
IT
Rolex 116234
Rolex 116234
S$ 9,950
Seller
Heng Seng Pawnshop Co. Pte Ltd
SG
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph inkl. 19% Mwst.
TOP
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph inkl. 19% Mwst.
S$ 34,650
Seller
Helmut Seidl GmbH
5
DE
Patek Philippe World Time 5230G
TOP
Patek Philippe World Time 5230G
S$ 119,654
Seller
Chad Warrick
 
US
Rolex Ladies 18K/SS Datejust - Mother Of Pearl Diamond Dial  -...
TOP
Rolex Ladies 18K/SS Datejust - Mother Of Pearl Diamond Dial -...
S$ 3,707
Free shipping
Seller
SD & CO LLC
21
US
Girard Perregaux Neo Bridge
TOP
Girard Perregaux Neo Bridge
Price on request
Seller
Zironi Oscar Srl
34
IT
Tudor Submariner
TOP
Tudor Submariner
S$ 10,603
Seller
CHRONO.dk
22
DK
Omega Seamaster 300M Professional James Bond Serviced  &...
TOP
Omega Seamaster 300M Professional James Bond Serviced &...
S$ 3,206
Free shipping
Seller
WatchPA
7
SI
Girard Perregaux CAT’S EYE, TOURBILLON SOUS PONTS D’OR
TOP
Girard Perregaux CAT’S EYE, TOURBILLON SOUS PONTS D’OR
S$ 179,373
Seller
ZEGG & CERLATI
20
MC
Omega Century 18K Gold Caliber 269
TOP
Omega Century 18K Gold Caliber 269
S$ 2,390
Seller
Vintage Watch Services
132
NL
Rolex 16233
Rolex 16233
S$ 7,650
Seller
Heng Seng Pawnshop Co. Pte Ltd
SG
Omega SPEEDMASTER '57 CHRONOGRAPH 38.6 MM The 1957 Trilogy...
Omega SPEEDMASTER '57 CHRONOGRAPH 38.6 MM The 1957 Trilogy...
S$ 14,000
Seller
Private seller
SG
Patek Philippe Nautilus
TOP
Patek Philippe Nautilus
S$ 56,389
Seller
Chad Warrick
 
US
Rolex 18K Gold Ladies President- Pink Diamond Dial - Sapphire...
TOP
Rolex 18K Gold Ladies President- Pink Diamond Dial - Sapphire...
S$ 9,070
Free shipping
Seller
SD & CO LLC
21
US
Girard Perregaux Laureato 34 mm
TOP
Girard Perregaux Laureato 34 mm
Price on request
Seller
Zironi Oscar Srl
34
IT
Frederique Constant Classics Moonphase
Frederique Constant Classics Moonphase
S$ 2,377
BrandBoutique Member
Frederique Constant SA
Patek Philippe VINTAGE  PATEK PHILIPPE1960S 18KT YG REF 3425 AUTO
TOP
Patek Philippe VINTAGE PATEK PHILIPPE1960S 18KT YG REF 3425 AUTO
S$ 11,553
Free shipping
Seller
Watch Hunter
US
Rolex 36mm 18K/SS DATEJUST Custom Black Diamond Dial NATO Strap
TOP
Rolex 36mm 18K/SS DATEJUST Custom Black Diamond Dial NATO Strap
S$ 5,357
Seller
Austins Watches Inc.
101
US
Rolex Submariner Date
Rolex Submariner Date
Price on request
Seller
Eurotime PTE ltd
SG
Rolex 116334
Rolex 116334
S$ 11,000
Seller
Heng Seng Pawnshop Co. Pte Ltd
SG
Heuer Dive
Heuer Dive
S$ 2,744
Seller
Private seller
SG
Rolex Daytona
Rolex Daytona
S$ 26,600
Seller
ARIELLE JEWELLERS AND WATCHES TRADING
SG
Rolex Ladies 2tone Datejust Blue Vignette Diamond Dial -...
TOP
Rolex Ladies 2tone Datejust Blue Vignette Diamond Dial -...
S$ 4,944
Seller
SD & CO LLC
21
US
Rolex Explorer II "Steve McQueen" Ref 1655  Service...
Rolex Explorer II "Steve McQueen" Ref 1655 Service...
S$ 18,980
Seller
GRluxury Pte Ltd
SG
Frederique Constant Classics Automatic
Frederique Constant Classics Automatic
S$ 1,821
BrandBoutique Member
Frederique Constant SA
Rolex SUBMARINER 116613LB
Rolex SUBMARINER 116613LB
S$ 13,600
Seller
s.t watch
SG
Rolex 36mm 18K/SS Datejust MOP Roman Tan Leather - Box &...
TOP
Rolex 36mm 18K/SS Datejust MOP Roman Tan Leather - Box &...
S$ 5,082
Seller
Austins Watches Inc.
101
US
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Novelty 26400RO Pre-owned
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Novelty 26400RO Pre-owned
S$ 45,800
Seller
Chrono95
SG
Rolex 15000
Rolex 15000
S$ 2,800
Seller
Heng Seng Pawnshop Co. Pte Ltd
SG
Rolex Datejust II
Rolex Datejust II
S$ 8,400
Seller
Private seller
SG
Rolex GMT-Master II
Rolex GMT-Master II
S$ 14,200
Seller
ARIELLE JEWELLERS AND WATCHES TRADING
SG
Rolex Ladies Stainless Steel Datejust - Tahitian Diamond Dial...
TOP
Rolex Ladies Stainless Steel Datejust - Tahitian Diamond Dial...
S$ 3,294
Seller
SD & CO LLC
21
US
Rolex Daytona Floating Dial Inverted 6 Ref 16520 Zenith Movement
Rolex Daytona Floating Dial Inverted 6 Ref 16520 Zenith Movement
S$ 62,880
Seller
GRluxury Pte Ltd
SG
Frederique Constant Manufacture Classic
Frederique Constant Manufacture Classic
S$ 3,465
BrandBoutique Member
Frederique Constant SA

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.