the Ebel brand has won over all true…
Over a century in business, the Ebel brand has won over all true watch collectors. When the love of two people gives birth to one of the finest watch factories in the world, we want to know more.
It was on July 15, 1911, that Eugène Blum and Alice Lévy, already married, entered into business partnership in a Swiss watch company, embarking on a new adventure which was to become their destiny. Their firstborn child was named, Ebel, taken from the initials of Eugène Blum et Lévy. Eugène Blum took charge of all technical and manufacturing while his wife managed the aesthetic design and development of innovative products. The company was established in La Chauxde-Fonds, birthplace of watchmaking, in a house built by the famous Swiss architect Le Corbusier. Ebel introduced the first wristwatch in 1912, followed by the ring watch in 1914, a Gold Medal winner at the National Exhibition in Bern. The company continued its early momentum, establishing itself from this point forward as a leading brand.
In 1929, Eugène introduced his son to the family business, ensuring the continuity of Ebel. Charles-Eugène Blum wished to strengthen manufacturing and to create the image of Swiss watches as an indispensable luxury item. In 1930, Ebel released the first of many innovations, an automatic self-winding travel watch. In 1935 Ebel was the first in the world to use the ‘Western Electric’ system ensuring accuracy of the watch movement. During the Second World War, Ebel was supplier of time pieces to the British Army.
In 1970 Charles-Eugène called on his son Pierre-Alain Blum to interrupt his studies in the United States to join the company, a succession that would position the brand in the highest echelons of international luxury. Pierre-Alain focused on watch models created for the world of high performance sport, including the «Sport Classic» in 1977, which captured the imagination of watch fans with the nowfamous undulating wave-shaped bracelet. Ebel was even retained to manufacture watches for Cartier. In 1996 Pierre-Alain stepped down and in 1999, the brand was bought by Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy (The LVMH Group). Following this development, a string of superstars and celebrity models sported the brand, such as Claudia Schiffer, Nicole Kidman, and Uma Thurman, among others. In 2004, Ebel passed to the Movado Group and underwent a corporate makeover.
In 2011, Ebel celebrated its centennial. To expand its market and consolidate its luxury image, the company chose to align itself with the world of sport by becoming partner-sponsor to internationally renowned events. ‘The Architects of Time’, and the name, Ebel, have already demonstrated that they will be a force in the twenty-first century luxury marketplace.
What does Ebel stand for today? Karen Bradbury, President, North America knows it must create consumer interest. “New parameters now define the luxury time piece market and its players, requiring a well-defined product identity and positioning. The last two collections, the Ebel X-1 and classic Onde lines, have situated the brand permanently among the greatest and most prestigious.” In reinterpreting traditional insertion techniques – diamond setting onto pink gold frame mounts, and mother-of-pearl onto dials – Ebel has redefined and elevated the standards of its signature and ensured a place among the greatest innovators in watch making. “We are proud of our Blum-Lévy heritage, all of our creations past and present respecting the vision and passion our founders had for the brand.” And that makes for a watch you will never wish to part from!
”We are proud of our Blum-Lévy heritage, all of our creations past and present respecting the vision and passion our founders had for the brand.”
By: Michèle Coulombe