Founded by two friends, Jules-Louis Audemars and Edward-Auguste Piguet, in Le Brassus in 1875, Audemars Piguet is best known for iconic models such as the Royal Oak, designed by the legendary Gérald Genta. Buy a pre-owned Audemars Piguet Royal Oak and savour a timepiece that is regarded as the genesis of the modern sports watch. Read moreView All
Today, Audemars Piguet watches are considered one of the top three horological brands in the world for quality, complexity and desirability. This kind of global respect is not earned overnight—it is the result of over one hundred years of hard work and dedication. In order to be a leader and not a follower, the brand had to differentiate itself from its competitors, which means taking risks; risks that almost cost the company its own existence.
Le Brassus, 1875, in the heart of the Vallée de Joux. Two friends, Jules-Louis Audemars and Edward-Auguste Piguet establish a workshop from which to make movements. The former produced and assembled movements while the latter ensured that the completed movements were correctly regulated. The two friends made the Audemars Piguet name successful by being the best at what they did, and over time, the company began to grow, quickly becoming one of the largest watchmaking employers in Switzerland. Quality control was where the manufacturer excelled, allowing the brand to produce some stunningly complicated movements.
Despite the deaths of the two founders in 1918 and 1919, the company continued to be one of the finest in watchmaking, with achievements such as the smallest minute repeater, the thinnest watch and the first skeleton watch. However, the stock market crash of the 1930s forced many watchmakers to the brink of collapse, and Audemars Piguet was one of them. The market for luxury goods had virtually fallen flat overnight.
This make or break scenario gave the company a chance to try something daring, hiring up and coming design talent Gérald Genta to design a piece so bold and unique that it could have very easily sunk the brand into oblivion. Taking inspiration from the 1862 battleship, the HMS Royal Oak, Genta used the octagonal portholes as the basis of his case design, integrating the bracelet into it seamlessly. Compared to the period watches of the time, the Royal Oak watch was a futuristic, dynamic and angular shock to the system.
The biggest shock was not the watch itself, but the price. At its release in 1972, it cost more than every other watch and ten times more than the period Rolex Submariner, and so initial take-up was slow. As a product that only the most affluent could afford, this extreme pricing did, however, introduce a new level of super-premium luxury, and once the Royal Oak took, it took well, pulling it out of the mire and back into financial success.
The Royal Oak evolved into the Royal Oak Offshore in 1993, a modern evolution of the piece that changed history for Audemars Piguet. Raising the price bar once again, the large, bold and often colourful Royal Oak Offshore has recreated the niche for super-luxury watches, opening the floodgates for new, super-premium brands to follow in its footsteps. The Royal Oak Offshore can be summed up partly by its use of exotic materials and by its inflated proportions, but mainly for the quality and watchmaking excellence that has run through the DNA of Audemars Piguet since its inception.
Please choose your region and preferred language.
Our Platform uses various types of cookies, each of which has a specific function. Below you can manage your preferences.
These cookies are essential to provide you with services available through this Platform and to use some of its features, such as access to secure areas. Without these cookies, services you have asked for, like transactional pages and secure login accounts, would not be possible.
These cookies serve a variety of purposes related to the presentation, performance and functionality of this Platform. Their overall purpose, however, is to enhance visitors’ experience and enjoyment of this Platform. For example, some of these cookies enable visitors to specify language, product or other platform preferences.
These cookies, including those from third parties, are used to collect information about how visitors use our Platform. The information gathered does not identify any individual visitor and is aggregated. It includes the number of visitors to our Platform, the platforms that referred them to our Platform and the pages that they visited on our Platform. We use this information to help run our Platform more efficiently, to gather broad demographic information and to monitor the level of activity on our Platform.
These cookies, including those from third parties, are aimed at creating profiles related to you and are used to deliver adverts more relevant to you and your interests in line with your preferences expressed while surfing the web. They are also used to limit the number of times you see an advertisement as well as help to evaluate the effectiveness of advertising and promotion. They are usually placed by advertising networks with our permission. They remember that you have visited a platform and this information is shared with other organisations such as advertisers.
These cookies are third party cookies (e.g. Facebook) that allow you to interact with social media platforms. The companies that serve these cookies may also use your information to serve targeted advertising on other platforms.
Third party cookies are cookies from sites or web servers other than our own, which are also used for the purposes of those third parties.
By clicking "Accept all" you declare that you consent to the use of all cookies stated above.