Breitling acquires the timeless brand, Universal Genève

After Hong Kong-based Stelux Group, Breitling takes the reins of the company to revive the brand to its original glory.

January 10, 2024: Breitling, the Swiss watch brand renowned for horological artistry and innovation, announced the acquisition of the historic Swiss watchmaker Universal Genève, ushering in a new era for the brand. 

Universal Geneve vintage poster

The two brands, surprisingly, rekindle their relationship. Renowned as both rivals and allies in the world of watchmaking, these horological powerhouses are all set to coexist and showcase their power. 

Georges Kern, CEO of Breitling, said, “Rebuilding a brand with such a rich narrative is not a quick endeavor—it is a meticulous labor of love that we anticipate will unfold over the coming years. A dedicated team will be brought on board to allow Breitling and Universal Genève to operate as separate maisons.” 

Universal Geneve vintage watch

The brand was previously owned by Stelux Group. Joseph Wong, Chairman and CEO of Stelux Group, said, “We are convinced that Breitling is best positioned to take Universal Genève to the next level, as it has so successfully done with its own marque.” He added, “When stewarding a maison d’horlogerie of this stature, preserving its heritage is a topmost concern. The management at Breitling has demonstrated that it is 100 percent committed to ensuring that Universal Genève lives on, not just in name but in spirit.”

The deal to acquire Universal Genève is a strategic move by the Breitling, in collaboration with majority shareholder Partners Group based in Zug, Switzerland. Together, they forge ahead in crafting a legacy of luxury watchmaking deeply rooted in heritage, seamlessly blending individual prowess with a shared commitment to honoring their remarkable history of ingenuity.

- By Pritha Debroy

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