By Pierre-Yves Donzé (auth.)
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Extra resources for A Business History of the Swatch Group: The Rebirth of Swiss Watchmaking and the Globalization of the Luxury Industry
But the Swatch’s most important innovation was that it was sold as a global brand, that is, a product that is not adapted to local markets but is marketed throughout the world in exactly the same way. Until the 1980s, Swiss watch brands followed a great many different approaches worldwide. Many watch manufacturers exported only naked movements (44 per cent of the total volume of watch exports in 1980),16 which were encased in Hong Kong or the main markets on which they were sold. This strategy provided a means of cutting production costs, which were high in Switzerland, and offering consumers products that matched local tastes.
A. ) in the Vallée de Joux (1932), the ladies’ watchmaker Marc Favre & The Creation of the Swatch Group 29 Co. SA in Biel (1955) and Rayville SA – Montres Blancpain in Villeret (1963), as well as for many small watchmakers scattered throughout the Jura Arc. As SSIH grew apace, in the mid-1960s it entered the field of so-called “economy” watches, also called roskopf or “pin-lever” watches, which were low-quality, mass-produced mechanical watches. Before the advent of quartz watches, this type of inexpensive watch, primarily produced by the American firm United States Time Co.
Hayek became its president, that is, the Swatch Group’s CEO, in 1986 and strengthened it in 1988 by appointing eight new members, all active at holding company level (central administration, management, law, finance, real estate, human resources). The Executive Management Board now had 11 members, as against only 4 in 1985. It then took charge of rationalizing the Swatch Group. 1). In 1985, there were four bank directors among the eight members and the position of Chairman was filled by François Milliet, an administrator of several companies including UBS.
A Business History of the Swatch Group: The Rebirth of Swiss Watchmaking and the Globalization of the Luxury Industry by Pierre-Yves Donzé (auth.)