The origins of Swiss luxury watch brand ‘Manufacture Royale’ goes back to 1770. This iconic brand name was relaunched in 2010, almost 250 years later the foundation of “Manufacture Royale des Montres de Ferney” by French philosopher Voltaire.
History of MANUFACTURE ROYALE
The Manufacture Royale traces its origins to the Enlightenment, when the philosopher and brilliant entrepreneur Voltaire opened his watchmaking workshop near Geneva. Almost 250 years later, Manufacture Royale takes the liberty to play with its founder’s captivating past, values and horological creation to instil passion and spirit into its timepieces.
Manufacture Royale stands for a specific and different view of watchmaking. Which was already the case when it was founded in 1770. A fervent defender of liberty in all forms, Voltaire was also an entrepreneur. Often overlooked, his business activities led to the establishment of Manufacture Royale in Ferney.
Four thousand watches would come out of the Manufacture’s workshop, destined for the crowned heads and elite of Europe. Made by acclaimed master watchmakers, Jean-Antoine Lépine among them, the watches that bore the Manufacture Royale name incorporated the most challenging complications, including striking mechanisms such as repeaters.
Their exteriors were equally impressive, with gold cases embellished with elaborate engraving, enamel or set with gems.
In 2008, Arnaud Faivre founded TEC EBAUCHES SA for manufacturing watch components, high complication calibres, movement blanks as well as decoration and assembly. In 2010, he revived the Manufacture Royale brand with OPERA, a minute repeater watch model designed by Charles Grosbety and manufactured in collaboration with master watchmakers Michel Navas and Enrico Barbasini of Fabrique du Temps.
In 2013, Manufacture Royale was taken over by Gérard, David, Alexis and Marc Gouten of the Gouten family, through the GTN Luxury Holding SA.
Gouten family members have been renowned for their expertise in the luxury watch industry since decades. Promoted by the Gouten family, Gouten Distribution SA is a distributor of premium Swiss watch brands like Cartier, Breguet, Piaget, Vacheron Constantin, DeLaneau, Perrelet and Harry Winston.
Founded by Alexis Gouten (son of Gérard Gouten) in 2002, Macher SA was the leading distributor of watches made by Frederique Constant Group in Switzerland. In 2016, Frederique Constant Group acquired Macher SA.
An experienced entrepreneur, Alexis Gouten has been managing Manufacture Royale since 2013. His other business ventures are Maverick Time SA, LSD Luxury Stars Distribution SA, Saigon Venture Partners and Wobee.
Manufacture Royale has the technical and creative capacity to achieve the creative freedom envisaged by Voltaire. The brand’s watch movements are developed and made in its workshops, in the Swiss Jura. The skills and talent of master watchmakers and craftsmen are the guarantee of mechanical and decorative excellence.
Thanks to their work, thanks to the energy and experience they bring, Manufacture Royale timepieces contain an original interpretation of watchmaking, and find their balance in daring and beauty, tradition and modernity, passion and humility.
Manufacture Royale’s flagship collections are OPERA, Androgyne, 1770, 1770 Micromegas, 1770 Haute Voltige and ADN. Presently, Manufacture Royale makes bespoke timepieces only.