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.