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Brief Brand History for
In 1735, Jehan-Jacques Blancpain founded the business to which he lends his name in Villeret, Switzerland. In 1926, Blancpain was the first company to bring an automatic watch to the French market. The last member of the Blancpain family to manage the company did so until 1932, at which time the business was sold and changed names. The newly formed â€œRayville-Blancpainâ€' joined the SSIH, a group of Swiss watchmakers, in the early 1960s. The quartz crisis of the 1970s uprooted the Swiss watch industry and forced SSIH to sell many assets, including the Rayville-Blancpain name, which landed in the capable hands of Jean-Claude Biver and Jacques Piguet. The new owners revitalized the company in Le Brassus, Switzerland, where they produced high complications such as split second chronographs, tourbillons, and repeaters. The Swatch Group acquired Blancpain in 1992. The famous movement maker FrÃ©dÃ©ric Piguet SA merged with Blancpain in 2010. Consequently, Blancpain's watches feature in-house movements. It also is notable that Blancpain does not use an assembly line production; rather, each watchmaker assembles a watch from start to finish.
Product Line Overview
Blancpain manufactures several vintage-inspired, professional watches. Blancpain is best known for an iconic dive watch: the Fifty Fathoms. This rugged diver was originally designed in 1953; its continued presence in Blancpain's catalog speaks to the design's timelessness. The Fifty Fathoms Automatique stays faithful to the original with a black dial and large Arabic numerals at twelve, nine, six, and three. The Automatique is distinguished by its exceptional ruggedness; the watch is large, legible, and offers water resistance to 300 meters. The Fifty Fathoms is also available in a smaller size in the Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe. The Bathyscaphe may have a flyback chronograph or full calendar complication. In comparison to the dial of the Automatique, the Bathyscaphe has simpler indexes. With a similar 1950s vintage style to the Fifty Fathoms, the Air Command Collection contains watches with flyback chronograph movements. The Air Command is available in both 36 and 42.5 millimeter case diameters.
In contrast to the sportier Fifty Fathoms and Air Command, the Ladybird Collection offers more feminine designs that utilize both fine watchmaking and jewelry techniques. Many pieces within the collection are set with diamonds and prominently display mother-of-pearl dials. The designs are unique; Blancpain is quick to point out that they are not simply smaller versions of men's watches. The Ladybird is available with a number of complications. Similarly elegant, the Villeret Collection offers formal dress watches. Villeret is the Swiss village in which the Blancpain company was founded, so it is fitting that the design language of the collection is aesthetically traditional. The collection features double-stepped cases, Roman numerals, and many high and even grand complications.
The stylish Le Brassus Collection boasts outstanding movements, including calendars, split-second chronographs, tourbillons, and minute repeaters. The Leman Collection is named after Lake Leman and carries variations in a number of metals. Leman also features several feminine variations, many of which are adorned with diamonds. 'L-Evolution is distinguished by oversized numeric hour markers at nine and three o'clock and partially skeletonized dials. The collection is sporty and modern.
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