What is the History of Audemars Piguet?

 History of Audemars Piguet
History of Audemars Piguet

The History of Audemars Piguet is unique. At Rubber B, the idea that there is a notable connection between the history of a company and the quality of its workmanship is never forgotten. And as one of the leading manufacturers of custom rubber watch straps, Rubber B believes that it is important to shine a spotlight on companies who share our commitment to outstanding craftsmanship in the world of horology when the opportunity arises.

Few companies have impacted the world of watchmaking so permanently as Audemars Piguet. The company’s motto “To Break the Rules, You Must First Master Them,” is very much in keeping with the company’s ethos – one of continual innovation, and of not ever being afraid to take risks, even when things appear to be very dire.

What is the History of Audemars Piguet?
History of Audemars Piguet

In order to celebrate their contributions to the world of horology, Rubber B would like to spend a few moments with you to fully explore the history of the Audemars Piguet.

History of Audemars Piguet

Audemars Piguet was founded in 1881 by two childhood friends, Jules Louis Audemars and Edward Auguste Piguet. It is a common misconception that “Audemars Piguet” is actually a first and last name, but it is not – rather, it is a combination of the two men’s last names. The two friends were separated in their youth, but would eventually manage to reconnect in their early 20’s to create one of the worlds greatest watch companies.

The company was founded in the Vallée de Joux in Switzerland, which is an area that is notably significant in the world of watchmaking. This is because the area was rich in natural resources, such as iron, which were (and still are) essential to the process of making watches.

What is the History of Audemars Piguet?

Both men had previously been watchmakers when the company was founded – Audemars had previously created watch movements for the Tiffany company, while Piguet was an expert in regulating watch movements. After deciding to collaborate, the two men divided up their responsibilities so that the company could be more efficient: Audemars was responsible for overseeing the production of the watches and their respective technical aspects, while Piguet was responsible for the direction of sales and management.

The two men decided that the company would remain a family affair as time went on – its second generation of leadership would include Paul Louis Audemars and Paul Edward Piguet, and the third generation would see family members Jacques Louis Audemars and Paulette Piguet come to prominence within the company.

What is the History of Audemars Piguet?

How Did the Royal Oak Timepiece Forever Change the World of Horology?

Audemars Piguet developed the first minute repeater wristwatch in 1892. The minute repeater is notable for its chiming function which uses a slider to trigger different tones, or “gongs” using internal hammers to produce the effect. This can happen on request. Press the pusher button and the 3 gongs will tell you precisely the hour, quarter hour and minutes the watch is set at.

The minute repeater is one of the most unique designs, although repeaters had been around for over a century before AP made its enhancement. Owning a repeater timepiece made a statement since only the wealthy would be able to afford such an exquisite timepiece.

The Grand Complication pocketwatch was developed in 1899 which included a grand and small strike gong with minute repeater, alarm, perpetual calendar, deadbeat seconds, chronograph with jumping seconds, and split-seconds hand.

In 1921 AP created the first jumping-hour wristwatch. 1925, AP developed the thinnest pocket watch caliber, and in 1934 they developed the first skeletonized pocket watch. In 1946 they developed the thinnest wristwatch. Again in 1986, they developed the first ultra-thin self-winding tourbillon watch.

Though the history of Audemars Piguet proved it had made several technical achievements since its founding in the late 1800’s, it was the release of the Royal Oak wristwatch that would forever carve the company’s name into the hallowed halls of horology history.

In the 1970’s, European and American watchmakers were facing a crisis the likes of which they had never seen before. Asian wristwatch manufacturing companies were flooding the marketplace with quartz wristwatches, which were cheaper to manufacture and far more affordable to the average consumer. As a result, these companies were struggling to sell their products and to remain relevant in the minds of the everyday person.

What is the History of Audemars Piguet?
History of Audemars Piguet

Audemars Piguet decided to undertake a radical course of action in order to remedy this situation. Instead of making a watch that was cheaper in order to remain competitive, they would make an expensive watch that would offer consumers something that had never been seen before as a counterpoint. What was this radical implement? It would be the Royal Oak, which was the world’s first-ever luxury sports wristwatch.

In order to fully realize this vision, Audemars Piguet would need to bring in a watch designer who was just as radical and audacious as their initial concept was. The luxury watch market was the brainchild of Gérald Genta, who set the watch market ablaze with fervor, reigniting the passion for watchmaking at the 1972 Baselworld.

Gerald Genta, a well-established Swiss watch designer who was known for his unique, one of a kind design work. He envisioned the first luxury sports watch. It wasn’t just a tool watch like Rolex and other brands. This had to have the exclusivity that few could attain, and a price tag to match.

With a design inspired by an old-fashioned diving helmet, the Royal Oak was considered absolutely radical at the time of its release. Though it was not successful at the initial time of its release due to its high price and boxy design, the watch developed a devoted cult following over the years, and today it remains the face of Audemars Piguet in terms of their product line.

Audemars Piguet has established itself as one of the holy grail watchmakers along with the likes of Jaeger-LeCoultre, Vacheron Constantine, Rolex, Patek Philippe and A. Lange & Söhne Zeitwerk. This is an exclusive club of the finest watchmakers in history. People that own a timepiece from one of these watchmakers invites them into the fine artwork and exquisite horological history with each timepiece they own.

Each hand crafted timepiece is a piece of movable artwork that does more than cover a dining room wall. It is a piece of art that can accompany the owner on his or her wrist wherever they go, and provide time, date, alarm and many other functions, depending on the model.

What is the History of Audemars Piguet?

Need a Custom Rubber Watch Strap For Your Audemars Piguet Watch? Visit Rubber B Today

If you’re looking for a custom rubber watch strap for your Audemars Piguet Royal Oak timepiece, look no further than the experts at Rubber B. Rubber B has a wide variety of custom designs to choose from, so no matter what kind of rubber watch band you may be looking for, we are sure to have something that fits your style. For more information on our complete product line, simply visit our website today.   

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