Constant pursuit of innovation
Born in Le Locle, Switzerland, in 1823, Ulysse Nardin followed in the watchmaking footsteps of his father, Léonard-Frédéric, apprenticing for him, and later, working with precision timepiece expert William DuBois. In 1846 in Le Locle, at the age of 23, Ulysse Nardin founded the company that still bears his name.
He paved the company’s future with his pocket and marine chronometers, setting the benchmark in both civil and military realms. When he died in 1876, his son, Paul-David, took control. Ulysse Nardin grew steadily in success and renown and was crowned by more than 4,300 watchmaking awards, including 18 gold medals.
Despite its vast achievements, the firm fell victim to the quartz crisis in 1983 and was put up for sale. Yet, this setback transitioned into something remarkable: a creator of high horology that would propel its own renaissance and become revered, once again, for its revolutionary developments. Convinced the imaginative firm could become a market leader, Rolf W. Schnyder purchased the company.
It was Schnyder meeting with watchmaking genius Dr. Ludwig Oechslin that sparked the turning point for Ulysse Nardin, resulting in the development of many milestones in the watch industry. Innovation remains embedded in the Ulysse Nardin culture, often expressed through breakthrough achievements and the proactive use of new materials, like silicium. For nearly 170 years, Ulysse Nardin has forged ahead, anchored in seafaring roots with sights set on the horizon. Forever inventive, the manufacturer remains steadfast in its pioneering precision of fusing bold innovation with undeniable style.
The contemporary, bold design of watches from the Executive Collection makes them instantly recognizable. Their easy-to-use functionality makes them indispensable. The Executive Collection has proved time and again that mechanical complications can be simple to operate, and beautiful to look at. From the El Toro Perpetual Calendar to Dual Time and the Skeleton Tourbillon, these diverse designs emphasize convenient functionality.
Paying tribute to Ulysse Nardin’s rich history with the sea, the timepieces of the Marine Collec-tion draw their inspiration from the company’s acclaimed navigational instruments of the 19th century. First launched in 1996, the Marine Collection is instantly recognizable, with its iconic elegant hands, fluted bezel and roman numeral markers on the dial. The ultimate expression of technical performance and beautiful design.
A rubberized unidirectional rotating bezel, screw-down security crown and pusher, and excellent water-resistance that varies from 200 meters to 300 meters characterize the Diver Collection. First launched in 2001, Diver is both a highly reliable diving instrument and a distinctively elegant sports watch. If its sporting elegance and distinctive design don’t give it away, it can always be recognized by the dual logo elements on the rubber strap.
An in-house movement designed and produced exclusively for women, the very first Jade made its spectacular entry into Haute Horlogerie in 2013. Beyond the feminine oval shape, Jade holds a secret: time and date can be set by without pushing or pulling the crown, saving your nails. With water-resistance to 30 meters, the Jade Collection epitomizes the eternal beauty and technical achievement that define a Ulysse Nardin timepiece.
Combining artisanal traditions of the past with innovative watchmaking, the Classic Collection includes a variety of beautiful watches, each water-resistant to 30 meters. The understated classic three-hand timepieces complement those with breathtaking Jaquemarts complications like Hourstriker and Minute repeater. Add the delicate beauty of the miniature painted dials or the enamel work in the Grand Feu, Cloisonné and Champlevé pieces, and these watches are cherished works of art.
When it was first introduced in 2001, the sensational Freak was showered with awards for its revolutionary design. Every edition of the Freak since then has continued this mission of inno-vation. A Freak has no true case, crown or hands, with the movement pivoted on itself to indi-cate time. In addition to this groundbreaking concept, the Freak reshaped the craft of watch-making in its innovative use of materials: it was the first in the industry to use Silicium.