People of working age may find the name “Audemars Piguet” to be a household word already because this watchmaking company has existed since 1875. It takes a lot of energy, time, and resources to create a company that will live that long. But the present generation of working-age adults may be wondering why they would be attracted to the company’s wristwatches.
The Main Reason
Anyone researching Audemars Piguet would realize that the company’s main claim to fame is the Royal Oak series of luxury wristwatches. The company created the Royal Oak timepieces because it needed to counter the mastery of Japanese watchmakers as competitors. Audemars Piguet also needed to appeal to the younger generation, who admittedly have the purse strings.
After the initial success of the Royal Oak with young male watch fans, Audemars Piguet started to be noticed by the ladies as well. It means that watches designed primarily for young male buyers were being bought and used by female buyers. So the company created a brand new brand called Royal Oak Offshore. This one was also a big hit.
Audemars Piguet also developed Royal Oak and Royal Oak Offshore because the Japanese watches are priced considerably less than Swiss watches. Rather than go down into bankruptcy, these two brands helped the company survive the financial situation and rebound into profitability again.
True enough, the company is still alive and well in the 21st century. It has maintained a strong brand in a very competitive global watchmaking industry. It is the main reason you should take a second look at Audemars Piguet’s creations.
Audemars Piguet Accomplishments
There are other reasons you should examine the Audemars Piguet brand more closely. For example, the company is known for developing the very first minute-repeating wristwatch movement ever. No other company had that back then.
Another major accomplishment of Audemars Piguet is the first skeleton watch. Then there is the automatic tourbillion wristwatch under Caliber 2870, which was quite slim, thus garnering the attention of many.
There are many other notable accomplishments by this company. Here is a partial list of them:
- Development of the initial jumping-hour wristwatch that no one else in the world had ever created.
- Development of the thinnest watch in the world.
- Introduction of the Calibre 2885 “Grand Complication” automatic wristwatch, another first in the world.
- Launch of the sole direct-impulse escapement, still another pioneering effort by Audemars Piguet.
- Introduction of Royal Oak Carbon whose concept is based on the first-time use of carbon for manufacturing the case and the movement.
- Introduction of the Royal Oak Concept Laptimer Michael Schumacher was the first mechanical chronograph in the world featuring a stand-alone memory and three column-wheels.
- Development of the world’s slimmest automatical perpetual calendar.
Survival of the Cheapest or the Best
The dire financial situation of Audemars Piguet that led to the creation of the Royal Oak and Royal Oak Offshore collections shows that competition is alive and well, even in the watchmaking industry. Back in the day, it was the Japanese who were the competitors. These days, there may be other countries where Audemars Piguet has to fight back.
The Japanese had the upper hand when they introduced their inexpensive watches. Everyone who had a steady paycheck could afford their products. But Audemars Piguet was and is a luxury watch brand. Yes, it makes beautiful watches, but since they are rather pricey, the predominantly monied market such as the A and B markets could and can afford it.
This means that Audemars Piguet still has to compete against the many inexpensive and mass-produced watches out there. But Audemars Piguet emphasizes quality watchmaking that will last from generation to generation. That wristwatch you buy from this company will be useful not just to you, but to your children, and even to your grandchildren. That’s its main claim to fame.
So the fate of Audemars Piguet still hangs in the balance, especially when times are hard. It will take wise and judicious use of funds for the company to survive in a depressed market. It also means that the company has to constantly search for markets that will keep sales robust for years and years to come.
If you’re looking for a good-looking watch that practically every generation can use and be proud of, the Audemars Piguet collections may have what you need and want. Just look through their collections, and you may find that particular watch that you will be willing to pay top dollar for at any given time.