Meehna Goldsmith: Some of your watches now have a moon module on the Oktopus built by respected designer and one of the AHCI founders Svend Andersen. How did you form a relationship with him and decide to work together?
JW: We first started working with Svend for the launch of our SpidoLite SA models in 2009. This was the first time we started collaborating with independent watchmakers. Svend is a well-known and respected watchmaker plus he has Danish roots, which also adds to this collaboration. The Oktopus Moonphase came a year later in 2010 where we worked with him to build the moonphase complication for our diver’s watch.
MG: Do you plan to incorporate more of Andersen’s movement creations into your watches?
JW: This year in Basel we have launched our first chronograph, the SpidoSpeed and have worked with a different manufacture called Concepto to create a sturdy chronograph movement fit for a sports watch. This is the third movement we are working on – this is what the LW03 engraved on the movement signifies. As for the next watch I am afraid I cannot reveal this just yet but you will very soon find out…!
MG: After only a few years since your inception in 2002 and launch in 2006, you’ve gained acceptance and legitimacy as an independent, particularly with the watch geeks. This is hard to do. What do you attribute your success to?
JW: First of all thank you for your kind words. I think this lies on two levels. First of all I believe they have recognized and were able to understand the idea and concept behind Linde Werdelin. We do not do things like other watch brands in the industry. We set out to offer something different. Equally important, I believe when we first started, we almost immediately embraced the online world. We are among the first (if not the first) of the high end watches to sell online.
MG: How did you come up with the unique shape of the case of your watches?
JW: This was to a certain extent ‘dictated’ by the instrument casing. There may be a zillion ways to make a watch look good. But we no longer had the free rein, having to allow this system to work.
If something stands against you, you either fight it, or you work with it to your advantage. We did the latter. And it gave rise to yet another part of our DNA – the LW angular case design, distinguished with multi-facets and indentations at 3 and 9 o’clock to hold the instrument in place. Precision is key. There is no room for error when it comes to producing the watch case. Each facet, each angle, and each edge of a facet must be 100% where it should be. If a facet is 0.02mm too wide, an angle is deviated in the slightest, or an edge is not dead straight, an instrument won’t hold on.
MG: Will you make a new case style that perhaps doesn’t fit The Rock and The Reef?
JW: It is not our intention to do this. All Linde Werdelin watches are designed to take both instruments. This is the idea and concept behind Linde Werdelin, the power of two, mechanical watch with clip-on digital instrument for precision in sports activities.
MG: The Graphic Novel is a very clever and novel way to present your watches. How did you get the idea and what was the inspiration for this form of communication?
JW: Thank you Meehna. We wanted to ‘break the mold’ as far as communication & advertising were involved. At LW we do not follow trends, we have our own way and pace of doing things and focus on creating well thought quality and functional timepieces and digital instruments. In terms of communication, this means moving away from anything that has to do with traditional way of product advertising and instead going for a lighter and fresher approach, which does not necessarily use a product, but rather a beautifully hand-drawn illustration. The result is non-intrusive, engaging and aesthetically pleasing.
MG: How do you decide which watch to make next?
JW: Intuition and always listening closely to our customers’ feedback!!
MG: Where do you see the company positioned at now?
JW: What Linde Werdelin has achieved and continuously concentrates on is quality on every level, inside-out. Linde Werdelin is about giving the customer a beautiful, unique, highly crafted sports watch with clip-on instruments for diving and skiing.
MG: What can we expect in the future?
JW: You can certainly expect to see more of the SpidoSpeed and Oktopus in the near future…
Interview made by Meehna Goldsmith