Omega Interview with André Lüthi
WorldTempus speaks to adventurer turned entrepreneur André Lüthi about his affinity for the brand from Biel.
André Lüthi was managing director of Switzerland’s Globetrotter Travel Service from 1992 until 2012. Since 2013 he has been Chairman of the Board of Globetrotter Travel Service and CEO of the holding company, Globetrotter Group, with annual sales of over 250 million Swiss francs. He sees travel as a way of understanding people and learning life lessons.
Tell us about your career.
It’s a long story. The Globetrotter Group today consists of 14 companies with 460 employees. It all started with the Globetrotter Travel Service, which used to be well known for a hippy style of travel service with one-way tickets to India, for example. I arrived at the company 32 years ago and thought that this type of travel wasn’t sustainable over the long term, so I started restructuring the company, gearing it towards individual travel where people could be sure of excellent service whether they were camping in Botswana or stopping in five-star luxury hotels.
Since when have you been interested in watches?
I was nine years old in 1969 at the time of the first moon landing and I was fascinated when I watched it on television. So the Omega Speedmaster had always been one of my childhood dreams, but I never had the money to buy one. I bought my first Speedmaster nearly 30 years ago. I love the fact that you have to wind it up, which gives it a vintage feel. It also helps me to disconnect in a world that is increasingly connected.
Why did you choose Omega?
I went cycling with Yannick Jenni from Omega around ten years ago and he mentioned that Swiss Olympic had problems with their travel arrangements for the Olympic Games. I didn’t think that they would be interested in the Globetrotter Group but I called them anyway and since Vancouver 2010 we have been responsible for the travel arrangements for all Olympic Games for Swiss athletes, journalists and supporters. We became the official travel partner of Swiss Olympic and it was a great way for us to show the variety of our services.
What are your impressions of Omega?
I’m fascinated by the product itself but also by their fantastic marketing activities. As an entrepreneur I think that partnerships like those with the James Bond franchise and the Olympic Games were excellent moves.
How and when do you wear your Omega watches?
I do a lot of diving so the Seamaster is most appropriate, but I also have a particular connection with the Speedmaster because of my childhood.
What would your next Omega be?
I think it would be a Seamaster and I would need to take a closer look at the new collection, but I quite like yours [Editor’s note: I was wearing a 1997 James Bond Seamaster]. I think I would wear my Speedmaster for climbing Everest and yours for diving.
Seamaster Diver 300M, 2018 © Omega
Movement: self-winding mechanical, 25,'200 vph, 55-hour power reseve
Functions: hours, minutes, seconds, date
Case: stainless steel, 42 mm, solid caseback, water resistant to 300 metres, ceramic bezel
Dial: polished ceramic and sun-brushed PVD chrome colour.
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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