Although comfortably installed in Locle (Switzerland), the watch division of Montblanc has kept everything German. Leader unquestionably the luxury fountain pen market, the brand nevertheless trying to interfere on the grand watchmaking scene often part of the most anticipated international fairs watches. Back on 109 years of history at the service of quality and design.
A story written with the pen
Unlike Jaeger-Lecoultre or Longines, Montblanc has not developed directly in the watch industry. In 1906, three men united their forces: the banker Alfred Nehemias, the engineer August Eberstein and the papermaker Claud Johannes Voss. Indeed, the first two are passionate about the first fountain pen that does not flow and wish to develop the idea in order to integrate an inkwell and bring stationery into the world of luxury.
Although young, the young company prefers the sounds of the French language for its patronymic. Thus, in 1913, it adopted the white star with four branches, representing the summit of the highest mountain in Europe, a symbol of quality and excellence: Mont Blanc.
It was in 1924 that the company emerged its first win under the name of Meisterstück. This pen fits Montblanc definitely in the high stationery of luxury. Proof is, barely two years later, the brand is in full swing and settled permanently in some sixty countries.
A gradual reconstruction
This dazzling momentum will be halted by the Second World War. However, Montblanc recovered from its ashes and began a period of reconstruction as early as the 1950s playing on the ever-present glory of his master pens.
This is how the 60 Line emerged in 1955, becoming the first post-war success in addition to the Masterstück range. The massive publicity of the company in 1963 was the result of a famous exchange between two politicians: in an unfortunate position with his own pen, the German chancellor was given the mythical Montblanc pen by John Kennedy. Nothing more was needed to further consolidate the reputation of the brand.
From there, Montblanc develops derivatives of its flagship models and settles progressively all over the globe, especially in Asia in the 1990s. It is during this period that the history of the paper manufacturer takes a decisive turning point: 1993, Montblanc is bought by Vendôme Luxury Group SA (now Richemont, second largest luxury group in the world).
From pen to watch
Now the company is diversifying its activities. While remaining the market leader in luxury fountain pens, she created a luxurious line of wallets in 1995 and launched the following year a collection of high quality Seiko watches and accessories for men from Insidewatch.
It was not until 1997 that the watch division made its appearance. Bearing the name Mont Blanc Montre, it takes its quarters in Locle, in French-speaking Switzerland, cradle of traditional watchmaking. Success is immediate: the brand impresses at the Geneva Haute Horlogerie Show that same year, making itself a prominent place among the tenors of haute horlogerie thanks to its first Meisterstück watch.
Therefore, Montblanc only to settle a little more each year in the closed circle of major watch brands. One after coming out of revolutionary models as the named traveler watch Tourbillon Villeret Cylindrical geospheres Vasco da Gama.
An undeniable digital future
In a time when the connected objects rule the high-tech market, luxury brands can not miss the train, and Montblanc is no exception to the rule. Thus, the company recently unveiled its e-strap, the first bracelet watch logged.
In the same line, it was not surprising to learn the partnership between the German company and the South Korean multimedia giant Samsung. In fact, the two giants join forces to equip the new Samsung Galaxy S6 of the entire Montblanc precision: pens and branded leather cases are now part of the range of accessories of the watchmaker.
Carrying the name of a mountain so symbolic is not without consequences, which is why the sign closely monitors the reliability and quality of all its handmade models. Thus, the test of the 500 hours was created, where each tocante is examined in all the seams for three weeks in order to guarantee an impeccable quality.
Between elegance, refinement and tradition, there is no doubt about Montblanc’s commitment to the quality of its achievements. It is not surprising to see the name on everyone’s lips at major events, especially as the brand now put on a face of choice in the person of Charlotte Casiraghi.