Baume & Mercier posses only one slogan “Accept only perfection, only manufacture watches of the highest quality".
The company was founded by the brothers Louis Victor and Pierre-Joseph-Célestin Baume in Les Bois village, in the Swiss Jura mountains in 1830. For ten years, the company manufactured watches with escapement wheels and also introduced the cylinder escapement Lépine calibre.
In 1847, the brothers chose London as the European city in which to expand their business, and in 1851 they founded “Baume Brothers”. It was the next generation that was to continue the company, again a two-man leadership in Baume. Louis-Victor’s son, Alcide Eugene headed the Swiss firm, while Alcide’s brother, Arthur Joseph, managed the London branch.
In 1912, Paul Tchereditchenko, who adopted the name Mercier, became the company’s business manager.
In1920, the Baume & Mercier alliance was born: William Baume, third son of Alcide Eugene and grandson of Louis-Victor who decided to set up business in Geneva.
In the 1930s, the classic onion-shape of the Baume & Mercier watch was replaced by wristwatches with round, square or rectangular bangles, often adorned with precious stones. This same elegance influenced the collection of the 1940s, including models like the 1948 Baume & Mercier Marquise. In contrast to this, the 1950s was characterised by chronographs and small complication watches.
In 1964, the brand registered its current logo with the Greek letter PHI, the symbol for the ratio of gold and Leonard de Vinci’s theory of proportion.
In 1971, the creation of the first tuning fork watch named “Tronosonic”, took Baume & Mercier into the electronic era. Two years later, the Baume & Mercier Riviera was born, a classic example of the brand’s style. A decade later, in 1987, the “Linea” watch was created and quickly became a must for women.
In 1994, a year after the acquisition of the trademark by the Richemont Group, the model Baume & Mercier Hampton announced a new style known as the ‘Hampton’. This was continued by the “Baume & Mercier Classima Executives” (1996), and, later, by the “Baume & Mercier Catwalk” (1997).
The year 2004 marked the launch of “Vice Versa”: the first ladies watch-jewel to display the time wrist side down. This model was added to the Baume & Mercier Business Class collection in 2006.
Since 2002, the Baume & Mercier watch-making collective has been the owner of its own assembly workshop in Brenets, not far from Le Bois, a creative environment where all the skills of watch-making mastery can be expressed.
Amongst more recent news there has been the launch of the female collection “Iléa”, presented in Singapore in June 2008. This can be viewed on the website, along with the photographs from the launch exhibition The Magic of Cinema.
You can further your knowledge of the company as it is today, by going to the official website. For example you can view the present international advertising campaign "Baume & Mercier & Me” staring celebrities who deliver messages in support of humanitarian causes.
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