Ulysse Nardin

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Ulysse Nardin
legal form Société anonyme
founding 1846
Seat Le Locle SwitzerlandSwitzerlandSwitzerland 
management Patrick Pruniaux (CEO)
Branch Wristwatches, writing implements, accessories
Website ulysse-nardin.com

Ulysse Nardin is a Swiss watch manufacturer based in Le Locle in the canton of Neuchâtel . The company produces in the upper luxury segment .


Léonard Frédéric Nardin (* 1792) was the family's first watchmaker . His son Ulysse (1823–1876) founded a watch factory in Le Locle, Switzerland, in 1846, which, after the sudden death of its founder, specialized in marine chronometers under his son Paul David, who was not yet 20 , and with which they received many awards.

From 1906 on, the United States Naval Observatory bought deck clocks and pocket watches from Ulysse Nardin until 1942, when Switzerland was isolated from the surrounding occupied states. As early as 1940, these clocks were copied by the American company Hamilton and further developed using industrial methods.

In the headquarters pocket watches were complications such as calendar , moon phase , perpetual calendar , alarm timer and percussion built. Around 1900 there were around 300 employees in the plant. In the Watch Museum Le Locle some of the watches are issued from this time.

At the 1936 Summer Olympics one was wristwatch for men in stainless steel with chronograph and automatic winding placed on the market.

In 1982 and 1983 the company was close to bankruptcy . Together with other investors, the Swiss Rolf W. Schnyder , who had previously built factories for (quartz) watch parts in Malaysia, took over the desolate company, in which only two people were employed. Numerous historically and artistically valuable pieces from the company's own collection had either disappeared or been stolen. Within a few years, Schnyder succeeded in bringing the “Ulysse Nardin” brand back into the top field of Swiss watch manufacturers. Schnyder's partner and friend, the watch designer Ludwig Oechslin , was one of the decisive factors for the success .

Schnyder died unexpectedly on April 14, 2011 after a short illness. "Thanks to the existing succession plan, the current members of the management can continue to run the operational management without interruption and in the spirit of Rolf W. Schnyder," announced the company on the day after his death.

In 2014 Ulysse Nardin was sold to the French luxury goods group Kering  (formerly PPR).



  • Tran Duy Ly: Ulysse Nardin Chronometers, Pocket Watches and Wrist Watches . Johnson City, Tn, Arlington Book Company 1995, ISBN 978-0-9301-6366-2 (reprinted from: Uhren-Magazin , 1991, March / April, ISSN  0938-4413 ).
  • Pascal Brandt, Ludwig Oechslin: Ulysse Nardin. History in Time . Edizioni Argo, Rome 1996.
  • Marcus Hanke: Trilogy of Time. Astrolabe, planetarium, tellurium . Le Locle 2004.
  • Wei Koh: Making of a Masterpiece . Le Locle 2006, ISBN 2-8399-0146-3 .

Web links

Commons : Ulysse Nardin  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ The Clock Museum of Le Locle.
  2. ^ Rolf W. Schnyder died unexpectedly on April 14, 2011. Watches for Men magazine ( Memento of May 8, 2011 in the Internet Archive ).
  3. Further concentration in the Swiss watch industry. Neue Zürcher Zeitung , July 31, 2014.