Jehan-Jacques Blancpain registers himself as a watchmaker in the Villeret village records. He is the founder of the eponymous watch brand which will remain family-owned, handed down to his descendants, for almost 200 years.
Frédéric-Louis Blancpain, grandson of Jehan-Jacques, upgrades the Villeret workshops. He modifies the watch escapement design and develops an ultra-thin construction.
Frédéric-Emile Blancpain, son of Frédéric-Louis, renames the company Fabrique d’horlogerie Emile Blancpain and launches the construction of what will become the largest watch manufacturer in Villeret.
Louis-Elysée Piguet opens his watchmaking workshop in Vallée de Joux. He transforms the old mill at Le Brassus, where the workshops for complicated watches and Blancpain Artistic Crafts are now located. His fame leads him to create complicated movements for prestigious brands in Geneva and elsewhere in Switzerland.
Frédéric-Emile Blancpain, representing the 7th generation to be running the family business, dies and leaves the company to his long-term assistant Betty Fiechter. She becomes the first female CEO of a leading watchmaking company.
Betty Fiechter co-manages Blancpain with her nephew Jean-Jacques Fiechter. They will work together for 20 years, until Betty retires.
Blancpain becomes part of the Société Suisse pour l’Industrie Horlogère (SSIH), alongside Omega, Tissot and Lémania. Other than producing watches bearing its name, Blancpain becomes the centre for production of movements for the SSIH group.
Jacques Piguet, heir to the family business created by Louis-Elysée Piguet, buys Blancpain, which becomes the watchmaking manufacturer linked to Frédéric Piguet's watchmaking movements. Then in 1983, Blancpain becomes a subsidiary and Jacques Piguet hires Jean-Claude Biver as vice-chairman of Blancpain's executive committee. Frédéric Piguet and Blancpain will be managed through joint ownership until the official merger in 2010.
Jacques Piguet agrees to sell Blancpain and Frédéric Piguet to the SMH (Swiss Corporation for Microelectronics and Watchmaking Industries) which will later on become the Swatch Group.
Marc A. Hayek becomes the president and CEO of Blancpain.
Frédéric Piguet is absorbed within the Blancpain manufacture.
“INNOVATION IS OUR TRADITION” Marc A. Hayek – CEO Blancpain
Blancpain is the oldest watch company in the world, having been founded in 1735. After all these years, the Maison is still as dedicated to innovation as it was when it was first established, and it continues to push the boundaries of what a watch can do. The Blancpain motto, “Innovation is our tradition,” expresses the company’s commitment to continuous improvement.
A watchmaking workshop is established in Vallée de Joux by Louis-Elysée Piguet. He renovates a mill in Le Brassus into a hub for Blancpain Artistic Crafts and high-end watchmaking, which exists to this day.
When Frédéric-Emile Blancpain, the 7th generation of his family to operate the firm, passes away, he leaves the company to his longtime assistant, Betty Fiechter. She is the first woman to run a major watchmaking firm as CEO.
Along with Omega, Tissot, and Lémania, Blancpain has joined the Swiss watchmaking conglomerate known as the Société Suisse pour l'Industrie Horlogère (SSIH). Blancpain no longer only makes watches under its own brand, but it also becomes the center for producing movements for the SSIH family of brands.
Jean-Claude Biver become the vice-chairman of Blancpain's executive committee.
The SMH (Swiss Corporation for Microelectronics and Watchmaking Industries), which would evolve into the Swatch Group, purchased the brand.
Paudex/Le Brassus, Switzerland
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