PEQUIGNET is a luxury watch brand having its manufacture facilities and headquarters in Morteau, France. In the heart of the Franco-Swiss Jura Mountains, the historical birthplace of watchmaking, the independent French firm Pequignet perpetuates the great watchmaking tradition with a commitment to quality and passionate about its craft.
Since 18th century, the Franche-Comté region has been renowned for its great watch making tradition. At Morteau, the Grande Fabrique, or great works, was founded in 1881, with more than 1,000 salaried workers. Great watch-making firms like Cattin, Parrenin, Maillardet and Frainier flourished and developed in the area.
Over the years, these watch-making houses came to rely on a growing network of part manufacturers and high quality suppliers. It was in the Morteau watchmaking hub, in the heart of the Jura region, that Emile Pequignet created the EP Pequignet brand. Scattered around him in this watchmaking enclave were manufacturers of all the components required to make a watch: case, dial, needles, etc.
In 1973 in Morteau, a region where traditional watchmaking was decaying, Emile Pequignet founded the Pequignet brand and signed it with his initials “EP”. Having entered traditional watchmaking at the age of 16, Emile Pequignet was as talented as he was ambitious. His aim was to create and produce watches and jewels whose originality is matched by the demand for utmost quality.
Honoured with five Cadran d’Or awards for the beauty of its Ladies’ collections, the Pequignet brand is now the preferred brand of a generation of modern, elegant women. A great horse-lover, Emile Pequignet made the Pequignet brand into a true ambassador in the equestrian world in the 1980s and 1990s.
At the start of the millennium, Emile Pequignet took a well-earned retirement. Thirty years of passion and conviction enabled him to position the Pequignet name as the jewel in the crown in luxury watchmaking, an inspirational hallmark of Swiss-made French elegance.
Didier Leibundgut took over the brand in 2004 and set about making Pequignet an Haute Horlogerie manufacture. In 2006, Pequignet opened its in-house Haute Horlogerie laboratory, equipped with the very latest technology, ably supported by the prodigious talents of its watch engineers.
In 2010 and 2011, the brand installed its Manufacture workshops and gave birth to an ultra-innovative mechanical movement combining reliability, precision and performance: the Calibre Royal. The Royal fleur-de-lis, the thousand-year-old symbol of the French royalty, became the emblem of Pequignet.
In 2012, despite great critical success, Pequignet experienced a difficult year. Two private investors then bought out the company, with the aim of preserving its independence. Laurent Katz became the company’s Chairman. An experienced manager, he devised a new development strategy for Pequignet.
There is no luxury watchmaking brand without its iconic model, a recognisable model which is different from all the rest, possessing a timeless beauty. There is no iconic model without a visionary spirit to give it life. Thanks to the exceptional talents of Emile Pequignet and Didier Leibundgut , today the Pequignet brand is in the fortunate position of having 2 icons: Moorea Collection & Manufacture Collections equipped with Calibre Royal®.
While respecting the firm’s manufacturing and fine watchmaking spirit, Pequignet launched a broader offering in 2013. The range has been redesigned to make it simpler and more readable. French customers remain faithful to the signature style of the brand, which takes care to maintain its affordable collections, just as it has done over the past 40 years.
Beautifully crafted automatic and quartz models have also been incorporated into the catalogue. In parallel, precision mechanics is deployed in accordance with a more balanced strategy, combining the original spirit of Emile Pequignet with the ambitions of the brand’s new managers. Production of an optimised version of the Calibre Royal has now gone up to 1,500 movements a year at the firm’s fine watchmaking works in Morteau, while its top-of-the-range positioning has been adjusted. A new, more contemporary collection has been launched: Royale Titane.
In 2013, a limited edition of the Equus was created as a tribute to the creator of the firm, Emile Pequignet, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of his brand. Reinterpreted and refashioned to suit current tastes, this watch retains its sober, elegant style, with its stirrup-shaped lugs.
Since 2014 Pequignet products bear the EPV label (Entreprise du Patrimoine Vivant- living heritage company), a mark of recognition awarded to French companies by the French state for their excellence in industrial know-how and craftsmanship.
In 2017, four executives from the existing staff acquired the great watch making brand and Mr. Dani Royer became President of the company.
- 1973: Emile Pequignet founds the watchmaking works bearing his name in Morteau
- 1984: Invention of the Moorea, chainmail, a steel link articulated with the bracelet that will become one of the brand’s symbols
- 1987: Launch of the Equus line celebrating Emile Pequignet’s passion for horses.
- 2004: Didier Leibungut takes over the brand and creates the fine watch making works.
- 2006: Creation of in-house fine watchmaking laboratory.
- 2010: Launch of the Calibre Royal, first movement made in-house by the firm. The Fleur de Lys becomes the emblem of Pequignet.
- 2012: The firm is acquired by two businessmen: Philippe Spruch and Laurent Katz.
- 2013: The firm celebrates its 40 years of existence. Launch of a limited edition Equus anniversary model.
- 2014: Evolution of the Pequignet, collections, launch of many new models.
- 2015: Launch of the diving watch, driven by a movement made in-house and the brand’s first «Fantome»
- 2016: A new movement developed in-house is presented.
Moorea Collection: The MOOREA Collection has maintained its incredible success since 1984, embodying worldwide a certain expression of the “French touch”, the subtle combination of sophistication and restraint. The inspiration behind the legendary MOOREA Collection was Emile Pequignet’s passion for his race horse, Moorea, the king of the horse shows in the 1980s. In search of a strong and distinguished identity, Emile Pequignet invented the famous MOOREA link bracelet; this was a steel grain-shaped link hinged with the bracelet, perfectly identifiable in its design.
Manufacture Collections equipped with Calibre Royal®: Created in 2011, the real flagship of the Pequignet Company, the Calibre Royal® is a mechanical movement produced in the manufacture and a symbol of the Renaissance of French Haute Horlogerie. The Calibre Royal® was entirely designed, prototyped, tested and assembled in Pequignet’s Haute Horlogerie laboratory in Morteau.
Benefiting from 9 international patents, the CalibreRoyal® is a true masterpiece of innovation. In addition to its absolutely unprecedented performance, the CalibreRoyal® is a grandes complications movement at a revolutionary price.
|Pequignet Paris Royal|
Initially three models were introduced under Manufacture Collections: Paris Royal, Rue Royale and Moorea Royal Triomphe. The Collection was again enhanced with two new models: Royal Titane and Royal Grand Sport.
Located in Morteau since 1973, the brand has kept its original building, although it has been extended; much work has also been necessary for the installation of an Haute Horlogerie Laboratory and the creation of ultramodern production workshops. The company currently employees around 50 people, and incorporates2 production workshops, an R&D department, Quality Control, After-Sales, Marketing and Sales Administration departments.
Entirely dedicated to research and development of the Calibre Royal®, Pequignet has an Haute Horlogerie laboratory incorporated into the company’s headquarters in Morteau. Under the management of Huy Van Tran, Design Head of R&D, this laboratory is fitted with the latest and most powerful equipment: Vario-couple instrument, Binoculars with exposures to 100,000th, 3D optical testing. The 318 components of the Calibre Royal® are subject to a strict quality control using a state-of-the-art technical system.
The Manufacture Workshop
In a Manufacture workshop branded with the company colours, each watchmaker has their own dedicated ultramodern equipment, which optimises their every action and is conducive to the relaxed concentration required to achieve watchmaking works of art. The Manufacture workshop benefits from perfect conditions with indirect light, air circulation, and cutting-edge technology. Around 200 movements are produced each month by a specialist team of twenty people, each of whom has been fully trained specifically on the Calibre Royal®.
The Traditional Workshop & After-Sales
This workshop is dedicated to the production, checking and repair of Pequignet products, which requires the use and management of several thousand references. Thanks to this internal structure, the Pequignet after Sales Service can offer a high level of responsiveness, ensuring short processing lead times can be met.
The World of Marketing at Pequignet is based on a unique creative vision and a perfectly implemented Marketing strategy. Pequignet Manufacture represented during national and international fairs: Baselworld , Paris, London, Moscow, Hong-Kong, Netherlands, Qatar Pequignet’s passionate and authentic 40-year history, and the exceptional quality of its products, has won over the watchmaking press worldwide.
Since their commercial launches in 2011 and 2012, Pequignet’s Rue Royale and Royal Grand Sport, equipped with the Calibre Royal®, have won 4 prestigious “Watch of the Year” titles, in recognition of their technical excellence and their quintessential French elegance.
The Pequignet brand is sold across 4 continents, in over 30 countries, via prestigious and select distribution network. PEQUIGNET has two concept stores in France: in Besançon & Strasbourg.
Pequignet watches are also available at the following retail stores:-
Galerie Lafayette, Paris
Boutique Les Montres, Paris
Boutique Lepage, Lille
Hall of Time, Brussels, Belgium
Berry’s Jewellers Victoria
Zbinden Bijouterie, Geneva
1 rue du Bief – 25500