Born Great: Zenith Celebrates

Born Great: Zenith Celebrates

Postby Darksider » December 3rd 2015, 1:22pm

Innovation has been at the heart of Zenith since its founding 150 years ago, when Georges Favre-Jacot, at just 22 years of age, set up his own watchmaking workshop in Le Locle, Switzerland. His singular intention of creating a complete watch, from movement to assembly, was a novel idea in the mid-19th century. At that time movement components were made by a variety of artisans in a variety of locations, often situated at isolated outposts where they both lived and worked. His early order of business was to invite this extraordinary though diffused talent to gather under one roof and thereby create a true watch manufacture.

The relative seclusion of the region—somewhat mitigated by the first rail link in 1857—and the harsh Swiss-mountain winters were conducive to such solitary crafts as lacemaking and watchmaking. But it was watchmaking that would eventually transform Le Locle, and Favre-Jacot, who would revolutionize watch production practices. He later incorporated a foundry, rolling mills and stamping machines in one of the earliest examples of vertical integration, and his prescient concept of interchangeable movement components is a legacy that changed watchmaking forever.

The Manufacture

Design and movement development are cornerstones of Zenith, and a close cooperation between artisans and specialists at the Le Locle-based manufacture is crucial to the success of the finished product. The Movement Development department focuses on new horological complications, and of the 600 movement variations Zenith has created, all have been developed and produced within the manufacture. To date, the company has registered more than 300 patents and holds the record for prizes (an astounding 2,333) in the field of chronometry earned by its pocket watches, onboard watches and wristwatches. ... ign=buffer

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