World's 1200 Top Watch Brands & Watchmakers: C
"I don’t wear a [Cartier] Tank watch to tell the time. In fact, I never wind it. I wear a Tank because it’s the watch to wear." - Andy Warhol.
Louis CARTIER (1875–1942) was a famous French watchmaker and businessman known worldwide for elegant and extravagant watch designs. He was passionate about mechanical pocket watches and had the goal of creating his own line of timepieces. Although Patek Phillipe created the first wristwatch in 1868, Louis Cartier is responsible for helping to popularize it over the traditional pocket watch.
In 1904, his Brazilian friend Alberto Santos-Dumont, an early aviation pioneer, asked Louis Cartier to design a watch that could be used during his flights, since pocket watches were not suitable. Louis Cartier created for him the Santos wristwatch, which was also the first wristwatch made for men. Santos first went on sale in 1911, the date of Cartier's first production of wristwatches. In Rue de la Paix he designed timepieces with the help of Edmond Jaeger who agreed to supply Cartier's watch line with movements.
The most important steps in Cartier's family business were made over several generations by the goldsmith Louis François Cartier, his son Alfred Cartier, and his three grandsons, Pierre, Jacque and Louis François. While his father Alfred managed the production of jewelry, Louis François and his two brothers, Pierre and Jacques, were the ones to help the family business expand. They eventually turned the Cartier brand into the most well-known name in the world of jewelry and watchmaking. In 1899 the Cartier family moved their Paris store to the elegant Rue de la Paix; later stores in London (1902), Moscow (1908) and New York (1909) followed.
In 1912 Cartier introduced two models still in production today, the Baignoire and Tortue; 1917 saw the debut of the Tank. It was also during this period that Cartier began adding reference numbers to the watches it sold, usually by stamping a four-digit code on the underside of a lug. In fact, many collectors refuse to accept a Cartier as an original unless these numbers are present.
Louis Cartier died in 1942. In 1945 his brother Pierre took over the family business and became the president of Cartier International. Later Cartier International turned into a huge multinational organization. In 1972 its president, Robert Hocq, took over the branches of Cartier in London and New York, and re-established the prestige of Cartier. Today Cartier watches contain the movements of such famous Swiss watchmaking companies as Vacheron Constantin, Audemars Piguet, Movado and Le Coultre.
Throughout its history the company designed models such as Tonneau in 1906, Tortue in 1912 and Tank in 1910. After the death of Louis François and changes in the management of the company, Cartier went on to produce Baignoire and Pan.
CERTINA Kurth Frères SA is a Swiss luxury watchmaker company founded in Grenchen, 1888, by Adolf and Alfred Kurth, and currently an affiliate company of the Swatch Group.
Certina Kurth Frères SA was founded in 1888 when Adolf and Alfred Kurth opened in Grenchen their first movement and supplies factory for the watchmaking industry. At the start Certina's staff consisted of three employees working in a workshop that was connected to the family home. Certina did not begin producing complete watches and timepieces for a few years which they then did alongside their work producing movements for other companies. By 1938 the company had expanded and 250 employees celebrated the 50th anniversary of the company. At that time Certina were already known as pioneers. Certina continued to expand and by 1955 the company had 500 employees working between the factory and offices, producing 1,000 timepieces every day. Certina worked up a new business plan that expanded its operations and was at the time considered the most modern and best equipped watchmakers in the world. By 1972 Certina employed 900 people and produced 600,000 watches every year. The company was ranked first in most major jewellery watch fairs, and they obtained both the "International Diamonds Awards" and the "Golden Rose" award. By this time Certina was producing 375,000 watch components per day and used 53,000 rubies. 1983 Certina became a member of the SMH Group (Swatch).
CITIZEN Holdings Co., Ltd. is the core company of a Japanese global corporate group based in Tokyo, Japan. The company was originally founded as Shokosha Watch Research Institute in 1918 and is currently known as the manufacturer of Cincom precision lathe machine tools as well as Citizen watches. The trade name originated from a pocket watch Citizen sold in 1924. It is one of the world's largest producers of watches.
Eco-Drive watches use a battery recharged by a solar panel hidden under the watch face. In the rare and discontinued Eco-Drive Duo series, the solar power was supplemented by an automatic quartz power source. There was also an Eco-Drive Thermo model that exploited temperature differentials between the wearer's skin temperature and ambient temperature to recharge the battery. However, the only Eco-Drive system currently described on the Citizen Watch official web site is the one depending solely on light to recharge. Features similar to the Eco-Drive have been developed by other manufacturers like Casio or Junghans. All Citizen Eco-Drive models are made in Japan but may also be assembled in China.
The Skyhawk A-T line of watches features Radio Controlled Timekeeping. The watches can synchronize with radio clocks in Japan, North America, and Europe and will automatically select the correct frequency for doing so based upon location of home time zone. The watch actually tracks two time zones—home and world—but synchronizes to the 'home' zone. When traveling, the user may swap the 'home' and 'world' zones—thereby enabling proper time signal reception on a different continent while retaining the other time. The day, date, and Daylight Saving Time settings are also set automatically when the watch is synchronized. These features are comparable to the synchronization with atomic clocks found in Casio Wave Ceptor watches. The Perpetual Chrono A-T is another of Citizen's radio controlled watches. The watch syncs with the atomic clocks in Colorado or Germany depending on signal strength and location. It also incorporates the eco-drive technology which means it will never require a battery.
Citizen also manufactures watches for collectors. For example, a watch bearing the colors and logo of the Blue Angels. This watch is part of the Skyhawk A-T line, which utilizes Eco-Drive as its primary power source and features Atomic Timekeeping. The bezel of the watch includes a slide rule useful for calculating time, distance, speed, conversions, and other computations useful for pilots. The Blue Angels use blue and gold as their trademark colors and the watch bears this colour scheme. In the UK, a version of the same watch bears the colours and logo of the Red Arrows, the Royal Air Force's world-famous acrobatic display team.
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