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Omega Who is Raynald Aeschlimann?
For GMT Publishing has created The Millennium Watch Book for its 20th anniversary, available for pre-order now. Read here an exclusive excerpt from the book.
On the occasion of GMT Magazine’s 20th anniversary (and WorldTempus’s upcoming 20th anniversary in 2021), we have embarked on the ambitious project of summarising the last 20 years in watchmaking in The Millennium Watch Book, a big, beautifully laid out coffee table book. The Millennium Watch Book is available exclusively now for pre-order at a discounted rate on www.the-watch-book.com, in French and English, with delivery aimed just in time for the holiday season.
In the coming weeks, WorldTempus will be exclusively sharing excerpts from the book, to give you a taste. Use the code WT2020 at checkout get 10% off your first order!
Here’s is an exclusive excerpt from our section “Who’s who”, where we name the 80 industry players, from CEOs to Creative Directors to retailers and independent watchmakers, who have indelibly shaped the last two decades of watches, written by those in the industry who perhaps know them best. For more information, visit www.the-watch-book.com.
Who’s who: Raynald Aeschlimann President & CEO Omega
By Robert Jan Broer
Aeschlimann started working for Omega in 1996, an interesting era during which Swatch Group invested heavily in (re)building Omega as an innovative watch brand. During and after the quartz crisis, Omega went through rough times and the 1980s collections were particularly revealing of these difficulties. In 2001, Aeschlimann became Vice President of International Sales. During his 15-year stint in that role, he restructured the distribution channels and rebuilt the trust of customers in the Bienne-based brand. In 2001, together with Hayek Sr, he opened the first Omega flagship store in Zurich, the first of many. In the 2000s, Omega introduced many horological innovations, like the completely in-house developed movements with Co-Axial escapements and the use of new materials, thereby helping customers regain their confidence in Omega watches. In June 2016, Raynald Aeschlimann was appointed CEO of Omega. Things moved even faster after that, with many watches from the collection receiving the Master Chronometer certification which gives the customer significant reassurance that they are buying a high-quality watch. Omega’s new CEO embraced the Internet by introducing e-commerce, online-only introduction of certain watches and focusing on online media to achieve the best exposure among millennials. Aeschlimann showed he was keen of focusing on that category as an important target audience, as the generation exempt from the sour taste of the 1980s. A revival of the Speedmaster and Seamaster collections gave the brand tremendous exposure and increased brand recognition even further. In addition, Aeschlimann showed that Omega is also a brand that respects its community and collectors, something a lot of others have ‘forgotten’ to do, losing this important group of connoisseurs to other brands. The re-introduction of Omega’s chronograph 321 calibre (that was discontinued in 1968) is a perfect example of the attention he devoted to collectors of the brand.
A company of the Swatch Group, OMEGA has been behind major revolutions in watchmaking technology and the timekeeping of numerous Olympic Games. Its watches are worn by world-famous celebrities and have travelled to the moon, the depths of the ocean and everywhere in between.Find out more >
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