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The Watches of Switzerland Group becomes a corporate partner of the AHCI

The Watches of Switzerland Group is pleased to announce becoming a corporate partner of the AHCI starting in May 24.

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The Watches of Switzerland Group is pleased to announce becoming a corporate partner of the AHCI starting in May 24.

The Académie Horlogère des Créateurs Indépendants (AHCI) is a non-profit association with the mission to perpetuate the art of independent watch and clock-making. The AHCI was founded in 1985, when watchmakers Svend Andersen from Geneva, and Vincent Calabrese, who worked in Lausanne, established a community of independent watchmakers.

They were driven by a desire to preserve the traditions of watchmaking and understanding of the danger that independent watchmakers, the guardians of these traditions, could disappear. It became necessary to advertise the activities of independent watchmakers, as well as to support their discoveries, inventions, and creative approach to the development of watchmaking art.

Today, the AHCI has over 30 creative independent watchmakers mostly Swiss, but also from other parts of the globe, with key watchmakers such as FP Journe, Voutilainen, Vianney Halter, Konstantin Chaykin and Andersen Geneve, all real artists in their field.

By becoming a corporate partner, the Watches of Switzerland Groups commitment to the AHCI is to establish meaningful and long-term ties to champion the advocacy of creative and independent watchmaking in the markets the Group serves and to contribute to the preservation and the development of watchmaking know-how.

Eric Macaire, Executive Director, Global Buying and Merchandising at the Watches of Switzerland Group, commented “As a Group we remain clear on our Purpose which is: ‘To WOW our clients while caring for our colleagues our communities and our planet.’ As a purpose-led business, our values are at the cenre of everything we do.  Our of our key values is to advocate for the industry: by proactively promoting and supporting the interests and responsibilities of the luxury watch and jewellery sectors in our markets.

We pride ourselves to represent the industry as wide as we possibly can with hundreds of brand partners from large groups to small and niche independents. We believe in the innovation and creativity to support the growth and continued appeal towards horology.

We are very proud of our team of Watchmakers, Case polishers, Technicians and Administrators that we have been able to attract to our state of the art Service Centres in the UK and US and together the team boasts years of industry experience. In FY23, we sponsored three students to study at the British School of Watchmaking and are in the process of preparing in-house candidates at our Manchester Service Centre for the FY24 intake.  We also have a longer term aspitration to develop a formal Group-wide  apprenticeship scheme.

We look forward to working in partnership with the AHCI to support the promotion of independent  Watchmakers, supporting the industry by advocating for it and also engaging our watchmakers by forming relationships with these prestigious artists.”