Blancpain was founded by Jehan-Jacques Blancpain in Switzerland in 1735. It is the oldest surviving watchmaking brand in the world. It is part of Swatch Group since 1992.
Blancpain is known for its Fifty Fathoms diving watch introduced in 1953 and its 1735 Grande Complication wristwatch introduced in 1991.
In 2008, Blancpain produced the world’s first movement with a one-minute flying carousel and 100-hour power reserve.
What were the major milestones in Blancpain’s history?
The brand was founded in Villeret in 1735 by Jehan-Jacques Blancpain. In 1815, Frédéric-Louis his great-grandson,turned the workshop into a mass production department.
In 1865, Blancpain built a two-storey hydroelectric plant on the banks of the Suzet River. In 1926, Blancpain collaborated with watchmaker John Harwood to create the first automatic wristwatch.
During the watchmaking crisis of the 1970s, the company was under his SSIH control. The Swiss Society for the Watch Industry (SSIH) is a former association of Swiss watch manufacturers. Blancpain was eventually purchased and reopened in 1983 by Jean-Claude Biver and Jacques Piguet. They turned it into a luxury brand and fostered the spirit of watchmaking tradition. When successful, they sold it to the Swatch Group.
Led by Jean-Claude Biver, the brand has focused its communication on an intangible respect for watchmaking traditions and emphasized its technical know-how.
Especially “His 6 Masterpieces of Watchmaking Art” :
- Phases of the moon
- Perpetual calendar
- Split seconds chronograph
- Minute repeater
The brand’s factories are located in the village of Le Brassus and Paudex in the Vallée de Joux, the birthplace of the brand. In 2007, his boss is Nicholas Hayek’s grandson, Marc A. Hayek.