Czapek & Cie, a fine watchmaking brand that already turned to crowdfunding as a way to raise equity, is starting a subscription campaign to let watch lovers acquire one of the 188 special timepieces of the 2016 “Quai des Bergues” line.
The beginnings of an adventure
Geneva, April 26, 2016 – The Czapek & Cie executive team has announced the launch of a subscription campaign. The 188 timepieces of the “Millesime 2016” Quai des Bergues collection will be made available to subscribers placing an order on the Czapek website or through official dealers. Each watch will be manufactured individually. Subscribers will be able to choose the number to be inscribed on the case back and many more options. The next series will be in 2017, with the exception of 70 pieces, which are already reserved for retail partners.
Subscriptions in watchmaking go back to the great watchmaker, Louis-Abraham Breguet. The idea is to involve the buyer early on in the watchmaking process: “To own a Quai des Bergues timepiece is, above all, to be part of a story,” says Xavier de Roquemaurel, CEO of Czapek & Cie.”We wanted to launch this campaign for shareholders and all the watch enthusiasts who have been eagerly following our development, while also inviting our retail partners to get involved.”
A story full of ups and downs
The story of Czapek begins in 1845, when François Czapek, a Polish watchmaker in Geneva, sets up shop on his own after the expiration of his “Patek, Czapek & Cie” partnership contract with one Norbert de Patek. His workshop was first located at Quai des Bergues in Geneva, but his reputation soon spread all the way to the imperial court in Paris, where he became the official supplier of timepieces, and opened a boutique Place Vendôme.
Three passionate entrepreneurs rediscovered Czapek’s outstanding creativity and decided to revive his name and his spirit. The 21st-century Czapeks are designed as if the original creator were still alive but using modern technologies applying contemporary design codes. Top-notch suppliers were hired for the components. For example, a new proprietary movement, the SHX1, was manufactured by Jean-François Mojon and his Chronode team featuring twin barrels and a seven-day power reserve.
The revived Czapek was launched on November 10, 2015, along with a crowdfunding equity campaign that ultimately raised an unheard-of sum in watchmaking of 1.1 million Swiss francs in 3 months. Over one-hundred shareholders from around the world expressed their support for the outstanding watches. Each of them will have an opportunity to personalize their Czapek with a secret phrase of their choice engraved in the grand-feu enamel dial that can only be read at a specific angle.