Audemars Piguet – one of the world’s most celebrated timepiece manufacturers – dates back to 1875. Two young men founded the company: Jules Louis Audemars and Edward Auguste Piguet. The duo, both natives of Le Brassus, Switzerland, settled in Vallée de Joux upon graduating from school in 1874. There they joined the watch manufacturing industry where they honed their skills. While Audemars specialized in the production of component parts, his counterpart, Piguet, focused on the final regulation of the timepiece. The firm they founded was originally known as Audemars, Piguet et Cie. The registration of the Audemars Piguet trademark took place in 1882. Since that time, members of their respective families have managed the company, directly or indirectly.
Audemars Piguet was officially founded seven years later and it became a major employer in southwestern Switzerland. Following the institution of direct supervision and strict quality measures, Audemars Piguet opened a branch – its first – in Geneva, in 1889. Audemars Piguet created its own components and assembled them within its factories. From 1894 to 1899, Audemars Piguet produced over 1,000 timepieces, among them intricate and complex watches. The Audemars Piguet company realized a steady growth even after the demise of Audemars in 1918 and Piguet the following year. The Audemars Piguet name became even more famous with ustomers such as Cartier, Tiffany & Co. and Bulgari playing a role in the success of Audemars Piguet. They re-branded and sold Audemars Piguet watches under their own brand names. Audemars Piguet is credited for various achievements including the following: creation of the world’s smallest minute repeater, creation of a jumping second-hand pocket watch, creation of the world’s thinnest pocket watch (1925) and creation of the world’s first skeleton watch in 1928.
Although it experienced difficult times during the Great Depression and the Second World War, Audemars Piguet survived and bounced back in the 1940s and 1950s. Today Audemars Piguet is one of the biggest watchmakers in Switzerland. Audemars Piguet remains true to its tradition of using handmade techniques for the best quality, and produces well over 25,000 timepieces every year.