It was the breaking news of this end of December : Chopard created a brand new brand within the Chopard group, called La Chronométrie Ferdinand Berthoud SA.
La Chronométrie Ferdinand Berthoud – A personal project
In Switzerland, there are almost 500 active brands for 1500 inactive – with registered names but just asleep for a couple of decades, or centuries. La Chronométrie Ferdinand Berthoud was one of these. Chopard bought both the brand and the name in 2006, upon the will of its co-president Karl-Friedrich Scheufele. Therefore, the Chopard Group is laying a new milestone in its watchmaking development and further reinforcing its presence in Fleurier, in the Val-de-Travers, Neuchâtel (Switzerland).
Through this project, Karl-Friedrich Scheufele intends to bring back to life the memory of Ferdinand Berthoud and restore this substantial watchmaking legacy to its rightful status. Positioned at the very peak of the collections within the Chopard group, La Chronométrie Ferdinand Berthoud will be dedicated to offering exceptional timepieces in highly exclusive production runs. This new horological activity began to take shape seven years ago, as Karl-Friedrich Scheufele explains: “In acquiring La Chronométrie Ferdinand Berthoud in 2006, I wanted to be sure that one day a watch bearing this name would be worthy of the great master horologist who inspired it”.
La Chronométrie Ferdinand Berthoud – Ferdinand who ?
Born in 1727 in Plancemont, in the Val-de-Travers (Switzerland), barely five kilometres from the current Chopard Manufacture in Fleurier, Ferdinand Berthoud was officially awarded the title of master clockmaker in Paris in 1753. An exceptional horologist, Ferdinand Berthoud left behind an outstandingly vast body of work encompassing the fields of marine chronometers, decorative clocks and watches, specialised tools, scientific measurement instruments, as well as publications. The latter include dozens of specialised books and treatises representing 4,000 pages and 120 engraved plates.
Ferdinand Berthoud’s career was also truly exceptional, as indeed were each of the periods of history he lived through – from the Age of Enlightenment to the Empire, including surviving the French Revolution. He has been elected to the Institut de France, and also commissioned “Horologist mechanic by appointment to the King and the Navy” during the reigns of Louis XV and Louis XVI, as well as subsequently under the Empire. In 1804, Napoleon conferred on him the title of Knight of the Legion of Honour.
Details relating to the launch of La Chronométrie Ferdinand Berthoud SA will be unveiled by the summer of 2014. (www.ferdinandberthoud.ch)