Feature: Who Owns The Biggest Watch Brands?
What do the ice cream companies Wall’s, Magnum and Ben & Jerry’s have in common? Don’t worry, I’m not about to make some lame joke; the answer is that they are owned by the same company: Unilever. It’s not just the frozen dairy business that this is limited to either. A lot of your favourite watch brands are also owned by groups like this. So, without further ado, let’s take a look at who exactly owns our favourite watch brands.
Swatch is the largest watchmaking group in the world and was founded in 1983 after a merger of ASUAG— Allgemeine Schweizerische Uhrenindustrie AG—and the SIHH—Société Suisse pour l'Industrie Horlogère—was made to save the Swiss watch industry from the quartz crisis. The Swatch Group are famous for owning Omega and Longines, but here is a list of all the watch brands they own:
Richemont was founded in 1988 by Johann Rupert. It has since acquired a rich portfolio of companies ranging from jewellery to firearms, leather goods to watches—it even bought a certain Pre-Owned Watch Specialist back in 2018. In terms of watch brands, here is what Richemont own:
A. Lange & Söhne
Baume & Mercier
Van Cleef & Arpels
LVMH or Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton—I’m not 100% sure why it’s backwards either—was founded in 1987. It’s an enormous company that owns icons like Tiffany & Co.— Moët, Hennessy, and Louis Vuitton, obviously—and a few of watchmaking’s biggest names, including:
A Few Honourable Mentions
Kering - Ulysse Nardin and Girard-Perregaux.
Citizen Watch – Bulova, Arnold & Son, Frederique Constant and Alpina.
Fossil – Zodiac.
Citychamp - Eterna and Corum.