Archive for the ‘International’ Category

Fake vs. Replica

October 4, 2010

As a WatchFreak you might have seen this already, but I had to share it with you. Not only is it funny, but I want to pay respect to our fellow WatchFreak who cares… This summer the Australian Watchmaker Nicholas Hacko had an interesting chat with a website selling watches:

Source: Authentics Foundation

“- Hi, my name is Nicholas Hacko. I am a watch dealer. I’ve just visited your website and wonder if you also wholesale watches?

– Hi. Well I am just a watch dispatch person you need to talk to my boss.

– That’s fine. However, it is important that before we enter into any business transaction, I want to make sure I am not breaking any laws…

– What do you mean?

– Well you guys do sell fake watches, right?

– No, not fakes. We sell replicas.

– Replicas, fakes, same thing…

– No, no. Our replicas are NOT fakes!

– Oh sorry, my misunderstanding. So you actually do sell genuine Rolex watches?

– No, no. You don’t understand the difference with fake and replica…

– Huh?

– … not genuine Rolex, just Rolex replica. But definitely not the FAKE Rolex.

– OK I see. You sell REPLICA Rolex!

– That’s exactly right. Genuine replicas which look identical to real Rolexes.

– Very good. So would you be able to accept payments in replica money?

– What do you mean, I don’t understand???

– You know, the replica money. Money which looks identical to real money but it is just replica. Like the stuff I can print on my printer…

– [laughter…] I don’t know, I am just a dispatch worker. You really need to talk to my boss [more laughter…]

– OK – let’s say that I do come into agreement with your boss and he does accept my replica money for his replica watches – which sounds like a perfectly fair deal to me – would you accept that replica money as your wages?

– [upset voice] Are you serious??? I don’t work for fake money!!

– No, no, no – it is not FAKE money, it is just REPLICA money, mate …

– Sir, I am busy, if you have any more questions please send us an email.”

The full article is available on Hacko’s blog: “Aussie website cashes in on counterfeits“.

Although this is a quite funny conversation, the subject is very serious. For additional information about the fake AND replica problem, please visit:

– Authentics Foundation – “Fakes cost more

– – “Innovation in brand protection

– My Authentics – “Is it fake

Please share you opinion about fakes, replicas, counterfeits, etc.

BaselWorld 2009 Update: Snapshots Omega, Graham, Oris, Hamilton, TAG Heuer, etc

March 31, 2009

It was another amazing day, filled with watches. We visited Halls 1, 3 and 4 today. The day started at Ebel revising the watches dedicated to soccer:

Ebel Limited Edition AFC AJAX (150 pcs)

Ebel Real Madrid Tekton (Bezel is made of sapphire glass, instead or rubber).

Going from soccer into another sport, Graham dedicated its passion for racing:

Graham GMT Flyback Chrono Racing

What do you think of the infamous ChronoFighter models by Graham?

Graham ChronoFighter

Graham ChronoFighter

Graham ChronoFighter

Not only Graham loves racing, the brand that has the most racing DNA of all, is Heuer! I already wrote that I feel it is a year of ‘going back to the basics’. They also went back to their roots and honoured the 40th anniversary of the Heuer Monoca:

A replica of the first Monaco, they kept it as close as possible to the original ‘Heuer Monaco 1969’. What I really liked is that they used the old Heuer logo and not the most recent TAG Heuer logo on the dial, case back and folding clasp.

Back-side of Heuer Monaco 1969 re-edition (original calibre 11).

Modern interpetation of the TAG Heuer Monaco, available from summer 2009!

TAG Heuer Grande Carrera Calibre 36

Yesterday we did not have time to finish our meeting at Hamilton and went back today. This color really cought my eye:

New Hamilton ETO in unique colour: GunGrey!

New Hamilton strap: Leather or rubber? Yes… It is a rubber strap with a alligator print! Cool, no?!

Modern (?!) interpetation of classic Pilots watches…

Talking about re-editions and vintage models, one of the most legendary diving watches in the Omega collection is the Seamaster PloProf:

Omega Ploprof 2009

Sideview of the Omega PloProf

Omega Seamaster PloProf on my wrist (sorry for the blurry image).

With a matching folding clasp!

Going from legendary diving watch, to a very interesting diving watch made by Oris. The talking piece of Oris in 51mm (who says big is over?!):

New Oris Diver Chrono 1000m with VERY special bezel…

Oris Diver 2009: You have to lift the outer bezel vertically and only then can you spin the CERAMIC diving bezel. The chrono is 100 bar waterproof.

Tomorrow is my last day in Basel… Already bugged out that I will not have time to see everything that I planned on seeing… One week of Watch Magic is simply NOT enough :s

BaselWorld 2009 Update: Snapshots Rolex, Patek Philippe, Breitling, Hamilton, Longines, etc

March 30, 2009

Most of the visitor of BaselWorld start in the impressive Hall 1.0 and you can not pass this hall without stoping at Rolex and Patek Philippe! Hereby some snapshot (my apologies for the poor quality).

I was not impressed with all the novelties this year. It seems a year of ‘going back to your roots’. Although everyone expected that it would be a quite fair, it was rather busy (visitors) and many brands still sounded positive…

Last year Rolex ‘rocked’ the fair with the introduction of The Dipsy, but this year I was not impressed AT ALL! It seems a year of flowers… Yes! Flowers. Check the dial:

Midsize Rolex Oyster with floral pattern on dial…

I did not take the effort to make a picture of the new bi-color submariners… We all know how the look like 😉

At Patek it also seemed like a ladies year… Focus was on the PP Seal and relaunch of midsize Nautilus models in precious metals with diamonds.

Patek Philippe Nautilus mid size

The platinum version is one of my favourite PPs, but I have to admit this gold version looks amazing!

PP walked away from the legendary Geneva Seal and introduced the Patek Philippe Seal.

We met an unique watchmaker that designed many amazing movements for the grand brands, still does, but also started his own brand:

Marc Alfieri Tourbillon GMT Watch

Ulysse Nardin knows what ‘freaky’ watches are, but they also started making cellular phones. Robert-Jan presented the back of the phone with a mechanical movement here couple of weeks ago, here is the front of the ‘Chairman’:

It is still unknown what the exact retail price will be…

Breitling proudly presented the new Chronomat models with the manufacture B01 movement:

Breitling Chronomat 2009

And, for their 125th anniversary this year, the created a limited edition Navitimer:

Breitling Navitimer 125th Anniversaire – Limited to 2009 pieces.

Seiko is 120+ old manufacture that also went back to their roots. The new Seiko “Ananta” collection does not only present new hybrid Spring Drive movements, but also manufacture automatic movements inspired by the original Samuari swords:

All new Seiko Ananta Automatic Chronograph

All new Seiko Ananta Automatic Power Reserve Hamilton slightly went back to their roots too, by launching the Automatic version of the Ventura (see our post about this watch)… But they are looking WAY ahead in the future, check these amazing new designs:

Hamilton ODC X–02 (front view)

Hamilton ODC X–02 (side view)

But this is not all, this is also a revolutionairy watch:

Hamilton Khaki BASE jump watches

Yes, you simply activate and reset the chrono by turning the bezel!

Also Longines went back to their roots and brought back some legandary watches, we are rather keen of this one:

Longines RAF WWW replica (see original here)

RAF Military www watch. 38,50mm with reference L2.731.4.53.1!

Last year Longines re-introduced the Legend Divers, this year they added a version with a date.

Longines Silver Shadow replica

We were very curious to see the newest family of Rado’s by Jasper Morrison:

Rado by Jasper Morrison

Tomorrow more news from BaselWorld! Stay tuned.

BaselWorld 2009 Update: Itay Noy Watches

March 29, 2009

Today I arrived in Basel and started the infamous trade fair visit with a dinner with a true artisan: Itay Noy. The watch maker of exclusive and hand made watches bearing his own name “Itay Noy”.

WFB first wrote about Itay Noy about a year ago: “Switzerland: The Holy Land?” and then I wrote that I tried that we would interview Itay Noy. Tonight was an informal dinner, but Itay promised to do a Q&A exclusively for WatchFreaks Blog. To be continued.

Same background info:

Internationally-acclaimed Israeli artist Itay Noy transforms telling time into a true art form. Each of his hand crafted, limited edition timepieces is made exclusively in Israel and appeals to those seeking unusual, high-quality watches. The recipient of eight prizes, including the prestigious Andrea M. Bronfman Prize in 2007, Noy lectures on timepiece design at Bezalel in Jerusalem. His work has been exhibited in museums all over the world and acquired by the Charles Bronfman Collection in New York, The Droog Design in Amsterdam, The Israel Museum in Jerusalem and The Tel Aviv Museum of Art. Each timepiece tells a story in time — from broken dimensions in the Fractal collection to simultaneous dichotomy in Duality and elusive cityscapes in City Squares. Noy’s timepieces satisfy the desire for a sublime mixture of unique design and functional perfection. Ace Jewelers is proud to be the sole and exclusive retailer of Itay Noy Timepieces in Europe!

Hereby some snap shots of the items we examined and adored over dinner (sorry for the poor lighting):

Itay Noy Fractal & City Squares

Itay Noy Duality Limited Edition Watch

Itay Noy: The name says all – Duality (the timepiece has two watches)

Itay Noy hommage to the greatest squares in major cities… Guess which one this is 🙂 HINT

Itay Noy: Discrete Bling Bling – Black Diamonds (unisex model)

For an overview of the complete collection of Itay Noy, please visit the official website of the watchmaker: or the reseller of his timepieces in Europe: (yes, as the CEO of Ace Jewelers, I am proud to announce that because of WFB, we became an AD of these unique watches 🙂 ).

Review – Chapter One

October 17, 2008

You have to leave it to the Purveyor of Time to arrive at where others cannot tread! Steven Holtzman has once again managed to create another watch industry “FIRST” in bringing together 3 of the finest masters in haute Horlogerie in an unprecedented collaboration with the creation of his latest company – Maitres du Temps.

Armed with more than 30 years of experience behind him, Steven is also the main catalyst behind Maitres du Temps – a horological masterpiece involving Christophe Claret, Roger Dubuis and Peter Speake-Marin. And what an incredible piece of art it is!

In the recently-launched Maitres du Temps – Chapter One which many has already been touted as one of the most revolutionary watches in recent history, its complicated combination of tourbillon, mono-pusher chronograph, retrograde date & GMT, and 2 rolling bars indicating the day & moon-phase at the 6 & 12 o’clock position brings forth an incredible marriage between the undisputed wizardry of Christophe Claret, the rich horological experience of Roger Dubuis and the unique bridging ability of Peter Speake-Marin.

With an approximate 500 plus complications, Maitres du Temps – Chapter One is not designed to be the most complicated of watches, but rather, its mission is to be THE MOST INTRICATE, THE MOST INNOVATIVE, and to a certain extent, THE MOST BEAUTIFUL. And what can we say? MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

This history-making Maitres du Temps – Chapter One, which took more than 2 years and thousands of drawings, was first conceived by Steven Holtzman and Roger Dubuis and followed by the addition of Peter Speake-Marin and Christophe Claret in the conception, design & project management and production stages respectively.

Aesthetically speaking, this Maitres du Temps – Chapter One has a combination of some of the crowd favourites include the allowance of looking into the heart of the watch, especially with the gyration of the Tourbillon Cage, the north & south rollers featuring the Retrograde GMT + Date, and Laser-etched Moon + Stars-phase.

However, in considering that it comes with a tag of CHF400, 000, and the limited availability of just 50 pieces in total (in red-gold, white-gold & titanium), clearly the Chapter One is a watch that is not meant for just anybody. According to an interview with European Luxury Blog, Steven Holtzman revealed that the aim of Maitres du Temps is “to work with independent watchmakers, to instill craftsmanship, bring masters into the product and offer outstanding service and distribution.”

While I can imagine that with it being in the categorised as “Uber-Luxury and Hogh Horology” (in the words of Steven Holtzman), it is not meant to be purely a profit-making venture, but rather also an avenue whereby the limits of traditionally watchmaking is continually pushed to the limits. Already, I believe that at least 1 piece of Chapter One is destined for a museum in the future, and speaking of future, I believe that all of us are just waiting to see the Maitres du Temps – Chapter Two in 2009?

Maitres du Temps – Chapter One Technical Specifications

Manual-wind mechanical movement, one-minute tourbillon, mono-pusher chronograph, retrograde date indicator, retrograde GMT indicator, day of the week indication on roller, patented precise moon phase indication on roller.


  • Central hands indicating hours and minutes
  • Central chronograph counterpoised second hand
  • 60-minute counter at 12 o’clock
  • Retrograde date at 3 o’clock
  • Retrograde GMT at 9 o’clock
  • One-minute tourbillon at 6 o’clock
  • Day of the week indication on roller at 6 o’clock
  • Patented precise moon phase indication on roller at 12 o’clock


  • Two-position winding crown: pushed in to wind the watch; pulled out to set the time
  • Chronograph: start/stop/return-to-zero function activated by single pusher in the crown


  • Date corrector at 2 o’clock
  • Day of the week corrector at 4 o’clock
  • Moon phase corrector at 8 o’clock
  • GMT corrector at 10 o’clock

Calibre SHC02

  • Dimensions: 51.3 mm x 31.6 mm
  • Number of components: 558
  • Number of jewels: 58
  • Power reserve: 60 hours
  • Tourbillon rotation: 60 seconds
  • Balance frequency: 21,600 vph (3 Hz)


  • 18K red gold
  • Number of components: 104
  • Dimensions: 62.60 mm x 45.90 mm
  • Sapphire crystal with double anti-reflective coating
  • Display back: sapphire crystal with double anti-reflective coating
  • High polish and satin finishes on compound-curve surfaces
  • Correctors with integrated locking system


  • 18K gold
  • Number of components: 7
  • Multi-faceted and beveled
  • Printed Roman numerals
  • Engine-turned sun-ray guilloche
  • Red counterpoised chronograph hand
  • Blue sword-shaped hands for chronograph counter, hour, minute, date, and GMT


  • Day barrel: anodized anticorodal finished aluminum
  • Moon phase barrel: anodized anticorodal finished aluminum inside a matte anodized cover with laser-pierced moon and stars
  • Window between day roller and tourbillon


  • Alligator strap with 18K red gold deployant buckle

* Special thanks to Ms. Sylvia Gelton, Public Relations for Maitres du Temps for the kind information, and also to European Luxury Blog for the exclusive interview.

* This review is strictly representing the views of the author, and by no means is a representation of

Are brands being diluted?

August 4, 2008

I was reading the statistics by the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry a couple of weeks ago, and it appeared that in 2008, Hong Kong is the top watch buyer of swiss watches with more than CHF1.3 Billion from Jan to June. Although it is not surprising to see that Asian countries are becoming more and more important markets in terms of luxury watches, but to see Hong Kong outpacing even America was indeed a surprise. That drew me back to the latest World Wealth Report 2007 by Merrill Lynch. It seems that for the past couple of years, luxury watches are ranked No. 1 in terms of “investments of passions” among Asians.

Countries such as China, Singapore, India etc are all experiencing record growth in HNWIs, and even among the working professionals, many of them have no qualms about spending 10k on a watch or even a dress. Its no wonder why everyone seems to be flocking there now. However, one of my main worries is that many brands will end up diluting their brand image. For example, there is a prestigious brand and it was deemed as an ultra-luxury brand. However, one of my friends recently told me that in Asia it seems that everyone can afford to buy it as it is producing cheaper models. It seems like luxury is no longer so exclusive after all.

Therefore, it was very encouraging for me to see that there are still many watchmakers out there who are still focusing on the traditional aspects of the industry. Companies that are focused on building a relationship, and not focused on building an empire. I had the chance to meet up with a couple of independent watchmakers, and you could really see the fire in their eyes. Some of them are producing just 15 to 20 watches per year, but they are more focused on giving individual attention to the watches even if they are capable of increasing their output. I just wished that there are more out there with this passion.

Meanwhile, check out some of the independents – Académie Horlogère Des Créateurs Indépendants at this website and learn more about the passion.

Switzerland: The Holy Land?

July 20, 2008

Is Switzerland the holy land for watches and WatchFreaks? Many will agree with me, that this is the case. Especially for Haute Horlogerie. But, what about watches from The Holy Land?

Many will also agree with me that The Holy Land is the region that is now Israel, but this blog is absolutely not reserved for political views, for this reason we will name the region between the Red Sea, Libanon, Jordan and Egypt, The Holy Land, with Jerusalem as the capital.

My roots lie back to The Holy Land and therefore since my childhood I always wondered if watches have been produced or designed in The Holy Land. As far as I knew, the answer to this question was “no”! I write, was, because last month I learned the answer is YES! On a business trip to Tel Aviv I read an article in the In-Flight Magazine “Atmosphere” of El Al that since couple of year Israel has it’s own watch designer and creator! Itay Noy (1972), Israeli born (, designs watches since the year 2000.

Tali Meron writes in the article “Philosopher of Time”: “Itay Noy’s watch designs open up a world of philosophical musings on the significance of time and its place in our lives.” She continues: “Itay Noy uses the philosophical concepts of time to design his watches. Itay was first exposed to the world of timepieces working at a watch shop in Tel Aviv after finishing the army. From there he decided to study jewelry making at Bezalel Academy, planning to specialize in watch making. … He later earned his Masters in Industrial Design in Holland, and his highly successful final project there was purchased by the famous Droog Design Company.”

Itay Noy

Itay Noy

As a WatchFreak you can imagine how I excited I was after reading this article twice! Not only was I bummed out that I did not have an internet connection available to view the collection of watches Itay Noy created, but more importantly, I wanted to find an address where I could see them in real life. But what annoyed me even more, is that I was 8 years ‘late’ with finding out that there was an Israeli watch creator… A watch creator that has studied in my home country… AND has sold a design to a revolutionary group of designer that have an amazing store/showroom in the heart of Amsterdam, that I often visit!

Unfortunately I did not see his watches. I went for a short trip and was busy with work. On top of that I got ‘distracted’ by the amazing things the city Tel Aviv has to offer. Of course, I ripped out the interview and stored it in my notebook. I knew that I would see it when I got back home and I wold set out my journey to find out more about Itay Noy. Unfortunately it took me until today to sit down and start my quest and in my excitement I decided to share this discovery with all of you on this blog.

While writing this post, I decided I will contact Itay Noy to ask him if we, WatchFreaks Blog, can interview him. I will be in Tel Aviv again next month and will see if it is possible to meet.

Itay Noy Watch

Itay Noy Watch

In the mean time, please visit his official website:

He also had a very interesting exhibition last year, named “A Second Second”. The official website is available at:

Please share you opinion about Itay Noy’s designs in the mean time and I will follow up as soon as I had contact with Itay Noy.

BaselWorld 2008 Kick Off

April 3, 2008

YIPEEEHHHH!!! THE most important trade show in the watch industry started in Switzerland: BaselWorld. This is noticeable by the high volume of traffic to our website and the huge amount of new posts on blogs, new articles on watch forums and newsletters sent out by the major brands.

In case you are a New WatchFreak, BaselWorld is the leading event for the watch industry. 2.109 exhibitors will present their newest collections. Over 101.700 visitors come to Basel to see the marvels of 2007 last year. All the major watch brands (expect the Richemont brands plus: AP, GP, JR, Parmigiani and Roger Dubuis – they organize SIHH in Geneva next week) launch their newest model in this period!

Personally, I will be present at this event from Sunday Evening April 6th, 2008 till Thursday April 10th. Then I will head to Geneva to visit the SIHH event till Saturday April 12th, 2008. I will try to upload a post daily from these events with pictures on the Ace Jewelers blog (! Keep posted!

Although I spoke to some people that visited the fair already today, none of them visited the Rolex booth yet, it seems that Rolex is stealing the show this year (again?!).

Please share your experiences, opinions, wishes and news here with all of us 😀

Couture Watches vs. Fashion Watches

February 26, 2008

Carol Besler wrote an interesting article about how we should title watches made by haute couture houses like Chanel and Hermes. In the article “Don’t call us fashion watches”, published on the website of the AIHH, Besler proposed to make a difference between watches made by fashion brands. For prices below USD 1000 we should continue calling them Fashion Watches, where as when mechanical movements are used and the prices evidently will be higher, Besler proposed to name them Couture Watches. I strongly agree with Besler and think it is an excellent idea, because Chanel ofcourse wants to differciate it’s high-end Tourbilion watch from the high-volume Guess watches.

Don’t call us “fashion watches”

A fashion watch is not so-called because of its affiliation with a fashion house, and yet a fashion watch can have such an affiliation. Furthermore, a watch can be fashionable, even if it is not designated as fashion watch, as long as it hits a certain price point.

In the 1980s, the Swiss watch industry, having been crucified by the invention of quartz movements a decade earlier, was miraculously resurrected when Swatch created the “fashion watch.” It was a cheap, plastic, fashionable and accurate alternative to the mechanical watch and, low and behold, it spawned a brand new segment in the watch industry.

Fashion watches, a term utterly ambiguous

Other “fashion” watches followed. There was Guess, Fossil, Nina Ricci, DKNY, Burberry, et cetera, et cetera. Because some of these watches were produced under license from luxury fashion houses, it so happened that, ever after, any watch bearing the name of a luxury fashion brand was dubbed a “fashion” watch. This understandably rankles companies such as Chanel, which objects to the notion of anyone placing, for example, its baguette-diamond-set J12 Tourbillon in the same category as a USD 250 quartz Nina Ricci (nothing against Nina Ricci ; it’s a great watch !). Even within the industry, the moniker “fashion watch,” still sticks to anything with a couture-sounding name. The term has therefore become utterly ambiguous, referring to anything from a USD 150 DKNY to a USD 2,000 Gucci to a USD 130,000 Chanel, depending on the person using the term and what they conceive it to mean. Because of this confusion, brands are shying away from the title in droves.

“We are not interested in participating in an article about fashion watches,” came a terse reply from Chanel when approached for this story. “We are watchmakers.” Similarly, Hermes, whose watches are made in Switzerland by one of the world’s most respected watchmakers, Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier, commented : “From ready-to-wear to leather to watches, it is our policy to join forces with experts in that field. We are not producing fashion watches.”

So noted. A fashion watch, then, is not so-called because of its affiliation – license or otherwise – with a fashion house, and yet a fashion watch can have such an affiliation. Furthermore, a watch can be fashionable, even if it is not designated as fashion watch, as long as it hits a certain price point. But what should that price point be ?

Time to address this crisis of designation

It is perhaps time someone addressed this crisis of designation, a crisis which, it should be noted, also besets the jewellery industry : the term “fashion” formerly referred to costume jewellery, which is made of base metals and rhinestones rather than noble metals and diamonds, but today, the term refers to all jewellery that is non-bridal, and stems from the notion that it is fashion-driven.

For watches, I humbly propose the following new segment designations. For all high-end watches – that is, with mechanical movements, complications and/or high jewellery pieces, AND which bear the name of a luxury goods brand, I propose the name “couture watches” (this would include Chanel, Hermes, Dior and Gucci). Brands with all of these qualities except a fashion house brand name designation should be called “luxury watches” (this would include Cartier, Piaget, Boucheron). And finally, brands that are primarily quartz, under USD 1,000, let’s say, and may or may not bear the name of a fashion house should retain the name “fashion watch” (DKNY and Nina Ricci, but also Fossil and Timberland).

There may linger some ambiguity in (or hostility toward) these categories. Some will argue that “fashion” should include anything under USD 2,000, but if we do, those in the USD 1,000 and up range might object. Others will object to the title of “couture,” which might not be perceived as sufficiently accessible to designate a mass luxury brand… I predict all sorts of objections. But it’s a start.

Ebel: Time For Football

February 15, 2008

Press release: Allianz-Arena, Munich, February 2008
Ebel scores another winning goal in the world of prestige football

2008 sees the world-renowned Munich-based FC Bayern Munich opting for a strategic alliance with the Ebel watch brand. In June 2007, the latter had already announced its partnership with FC Arsenal, another of Europe’s leading football clubs, and is now clearly stepping up the pace of its commitment to the world of football.

Ebel CEO Thomas van der Kallen, Managing Director for Ebel Germany Loek Oprinsen and, FC Bayern’s Executive Board Chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge held a press conference in Munich on February 10th 2008 to officially announce their partnership starting July 1st 2008 and running for the next five years. As Official Timing Partner for FC Bayern Munich, Ebel will take responsibility for all timekeeping aspects during home games. Ebel will provide the timing interface for fans within the Allianz-Arena and the presence of the watch brand will also bring a new timekeeping sophistication at the Club, particularly within the VVIP and Business Club lounges.


Delighted with this new agreement, Thomas van der Kallen pointed out that “after her first alliance with Arsenal last year, FC Bayern Munich represents an important and decisive stage in our approach to the football world, since it is an undeniable leader in this sport. We are already discussing possible partnerships with other major European clubs and we intend in due course to develop a full-fledged Ebel family of prestigious football clubs”.

Elite partners only
Ebel’s strategic vision in football is to associate with only the most prestigious clubs, belonging to the recognized elite of European football, and representing much more than simple football teams. FC Bayern Munich and Arsenal uphold the principles of excellence and hard work, have a genuine history (stretching back over a century), and enjoy international renown consistently enhanced by famous and great players. Both clubs have always been and still are at the very top of their respective championships, commanding respect and admiration, as well as an authoritative status that extends far beyond the soccer field. What is more, they are all committed to cultivating the finest sporting values such as respect for a noble heritage and dedication to perfecting their craft. Exactly the kind of deep-rooted values that guide Ebel in its approach to the art of watchmaking and in its choice of future football club partners. During the conference, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said he was “very proud to have concluded the rapprochement of the prestigious FC Bayern Munich football club with a luxury watch brand such as Ebel, since both shared so many common denominators that the osmosis was bound to be perfect. This long-running partnership will further strengthen the equity of both our names and our identities.”

A limited edition of timepieces dedicated to football
To symbolize this alliance between watchmaking precision and sporting ethics, Ebel has decided to launch a very special and unique timepiece dedicated to football. Far from confining themselves to cosmetic issues, Ebel watchmakers spent many long hours developing an exclusive movement specifically designed for football: Calibre 245. Developed, assembled and tested in the brand’s La Chaux-de-Fonds workshops, it is ideally suited to football because it not only measures each half time of a match (hence its name “245” standing for 2 x 45 minutes), as well as indicating extra time. Reading off elapsed time is ultra-legible thanks to the oversized 45-minute counter. The new football caliber will be housed in a new model enriching the 1911 line, issued in limited editions bearing the insignia of each club and available as of October 2008.  Ebel has already worked with the Arsenal and FC Bayern Munich management on developing highly emblematic versions for each club. “This movement is a world première as it is the first proprietary movement ever to keep step with football match time”, said Thomas van der Kallen unveiling the face of the FC Bayern Munich limited timepiece by Ebel. Meanwhile, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge stated “I am very happy to have played an active part in the birth of this avant-grade watch that represents the quintessence of the values and the spirit of our club”.


FC Bayern Munich – a blend of power and prestige
Currently heading the German Bundesliga and a brand name synonymous with excellence, success and high performance well beyond national and European borders, FC Bayern Munich is the proud winner of two 2 Intercontinental Cups, 4 European Champions League titles, 1 UEFA Cup title, 1 Cup Winners’ Cup title, 19 national championships, and 13 German Cups – making it beyond a doubt Germany’s foremost football club.
The Architects of Time are naturally extremely proud to be associated with this club and its emblematic new Allianz-Arena. Contemporary football gives pride of place to architecture, and FC Bayern Munich is a perfect illustration of this tendency. Completed in April 2005, the Allianz-Arena features an incredibly innovative design created by famous Swiss architects Herzog&deMeuron. In the latter’s own words, this achievement offers a “futuristic interpretation of the basic football concept” and its breathtaking exterior will be lit up during home games by a cascade of red projected onto the smooth translucent shell, thus “infusing the structure with an almost magical poetry”.
There was certainly no better place in which to announce this new alliance between Ebel and FC Bayern Munich the Architects of Time and the Architects of Victory.