As a protest against the new Swiss ordinance regarding the labeling of watches as ‘Swiss Made’ that was put into effect on Jan 1st, 2017, H. Moser & Cie has created an irreverent but symbolic watch made with actual Swiss cheese.
H. Moser & Cie Swiss Mad Watch
The new ordinance basically has three objectives:
• to guarantee the long-term credibility and value of the geographical indication
• to guarantee satisfaction on the part of consumers who, when buying a Swiss made watch, expect it to correspond to • the quality and the reputation of Swiss watchmaking tradition and therefore to be manufactured in Switzerland and to incorporate a high added value of Swiss origin
• to make the law more specific, in order to clamp down more effectively on abuses
The main change introduced by the proposed strengthening of the label consists in specifying a minimum value criterion for the watch, as opposed to the movement only. To be marked “Swiss Made”, a watch will have to meet the requirement of minimum 60% of Swiss value. (source)
For watchmakers like H. Moser & Cie, whose creations are over 95% Swiss, this label is too lenient, providing no guarantee, creating confusion and encouraging abuses of the system. For these reasons, H. Moser & Cie. has decided to remove the Swiss Made label from all new watches created from 2017 onwards. And they have critiqued the shortcomings of this inadequate label by mocking the initiative with the Swiss Mad Watch.
The Swiss Mad Watch is unique, symbolic, and irreverent, but most importantly, 100% Swiss and proud of it.
The Swiss Mad Watch is hyped by this bizarre video that references Star Wars with its title design and twists Donald Trump’s slogan from ‘Make America Great Again’ to ‘Make Swiss Great Again’ (the hashtag the brand is pushing for social media).
Created in Switzerland, by Swiss watchmakers and using Swiss materials: the Swiss Mad Watch has symbolic value, tackling the “Swiss Made” debate head on. The case of the Swiss Mad Watch is created from real Swiss cheese as a base material, a Vacherin Mont d’Or médaille d’or, added to an innovative composite material, itr2©, then machined and polished with the H. Moser signature finishes.
For the strap, Swiss cowhide was the obvious choice. The watch is finished with a red fumé dial and doubled indices at 12, 3, 6 and 9 o’clock, subtly reminiscent of the Swiss flag.
Disruptive? “Definitely,” responds Edouard Meylan, CEO of H. Moser & Cie. “Our Swiss Mad Watch sends a clear message to the Swiss watchmaking industry, the authorities and watch enthusiasts: the Swiss Made label is meaningless. Worse than this, it gives credibility to the worst abuses in our industry. Our response to this lax and insufficient label is derision. At H. Moser & Cie., we produce watches that are truly Swiss, watches that are steeped in watchmaking tradition and centuries of experience. The quality of these pieces speaks for itself and dispenses with the need for a label. We are no longer “Swiss Made”, but we are Swiss. 100% Swiss, in the case of the Swiss Mad Watch, and over 95% Swiss for all of our other models,” concludes Edouard Meylan.
The Swiss Mad Watch will be presented during the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) from January 16th to 20th, 2017. This is the perfect opportunity to admire this unique watch, whose price of 1,081,291, in Swiss Francs of course, references the signing of the Swiss Federal Charter on August 1st, 1291.
All proceeds from the sale of this watch will be used to create a fund to support independent Swiss watchmaking suppliers currently suffering under the difficult economic situation and outsourcing to Asia. These are the very artisans who keep traditional Swiss watchmaking alive and who help it to continually evolve.
Join the campaign – #MakeSwissMadeGreatAgain – to bring back value to the Swiss Made label.