As a child, the wealthy people in China always loved to bring a Rolex gold watch to swagger across the market. When I grew up, I found that celebrities on the Internet did not wear watches, and in recent years From the sponsors of major sports events to the interstitial advertisements of various magazines, watch brands of all sizes are full of them, and the consumption goals of rich men are aimed at watches. So this ‘time tool’ symbolizing status became a sought-after luxury. China has ushered in an era of watches. China has ushered in an era of watches
Quartz watch vs mechanical watch
Before we explore deeper issues, it is necessary to briefly popularize the concepts of quartz and machinery, so that readers can better sort out the entanglement between the two forces.
Representative forces: Japanese watches
Watches are mainly divided into mechanical watches and quartz watches. The quartz watch is quartz watch. The use of quartz crystals in watches is a modern invention. The first quartz watch first appeared in 1969. During the year, Seiko Japan discovered how to make quartz into a tuning fork. Quartz is an electric-powered watch. He has the advantages of low cost, large output and high precision, which makes it a brilliant and brilliant stroke in the history of watches.
The mechanical watch is more durable and has a thick cultural sense, which makes him have the characteristics that quartz watches cannot surpass.
Representing forces: Swiss watches
The watch that runs on the winding mode of the mainspring is a mechanical watch in English. The low production error is larger than that of a quartz watch, and the manufacturing cost is high. The production cycle is long, but the mechanical watch is more durable and has a strong cultural sense Make him have the characteristics that quartz watch cannot surpass.
Quartz and mechanical competition:
In 1969, Japan’s Seiko launched the first commercialized quartz watch 35SQ Astron in Tokyo, which opened the prelude to the quartz revolution and transformed the watch from a luxury product to a crystal fine commodity that everyone can afford.
The 1970s were the most painful and difficult days in the history of Swiss mechanical watchmaking. Cheap quartz watches flooded, flooding the world’s watch market, occupying the market share previously enjoyed by mechanical watches. The cost of a mechanical watch can never be as low as that of a quartz watch. Therefore, the price war is destined to end in the failure of the great mechanical watch family.
Swiss watch brands went bankrupt, and Japanese quartz watches led by Seiko began to dominate the market on a large scale.
最 The darkest period of the Swiss watch industry: 1964 and 1967, 1970.
In 1964, Omega, which had previously held 17 times the exclusive right to the Olympic Games, was defeated by Japan’s Suwa Seiko and missed the Olympic Games for the first time;
In 1967, in the Swiss watch chronograph competition, Seiko watch even ranked 4 to 10;
In 1970, Seiko watch broke 9 technical records in the competition with Swiss watch.
的 In the 10 years after 1970, Swiss clocks entered a crisis of collapse: Swiss watch exports fell to 30.7% in 1975, while employees fell from 900,000 to 300,000 in the first five years of the early 1980s.
Nicholas G. Hayek
‘Time Bandit’ Counterattack
Then, although the revolution in quartz technology brought a painful blow to the Swiss, the mechanical watch hasn’t faltered since then. One person’s appearance changed all this. His name was Nicholas G. Hayek …
In 1969, Japan’s Seiko Co., Ltd. discovered that a quartz crystal can be made into a tuning fork and used on clocks. The world’s first quartz watch was born. The use of quartz crystals enables watches to be produced in large quantities, not only at a much faster rate than before, but also at a lower price. The cheap Japanese quartz watch swept the world at a rapid speed. The 100-year-old Swiss mechanical watch manufacturing industry suffered a catastrophic disaster. The export volume fell sharply, from 82 million to 31 million. Nearly half of the watch and clock companies closed down.
At the time, Hayek, the ‘outsider’ at that time, felt very uncomfortable, so he came up with a bold plan and set up a Swatch Group. Hayek decided to use his own way of dealing with his own body and produce cheap quartz watches against Japan. Soon, engineers developed a quartz watch with only 51 parts (100 fewer parts than Japanese quartz watches). This not only reduced the failure rate, but also greatly reduced the cost of watchmaking. Finally, it cost $ 50. sell.
This watch, named Swatch, is not just about winning by price. Hayek introduced the concept of ‘second watch’ into this new watch. 12 million were sold in 1986. Hayek successfully proved two things: one is that Swiss watches can compete with Japan in the low-end market, and the other is that watches are turned into fashion accessories. After playing this beautiful counterattack, Hayek will include a large number of Swiss watches including Omega, Longines, Tissot and so on. He eventually built a perfect watch empire.
Nicholas G. Hayek’s achievements:
• Strategically launched the Swatch.
• Provides watch movements and components for the Swiss watchmaking industry, helping the Swiss watchmaking industry achieve its revival in the 1980s.
• Continue to develop and enhance watch products and brand image of Breguet, Omega, Rado, Longines, Tissot and other brands.
• Achieved annual sales of more than 4 billion Swiss francs, keeping the Swatch Group in the top position in the global watchmaking industry for a long time.
• Promote the Breguet brand new life. In his role as President of Breguet, Mr. Hayek spent less than four years returning Breguet to the ranks of top luxury watches.