“Go your own way,” Oris encourages. In the many years that the company has existed, it has followed its own direction of what it thought best. Today, it remains an independent company and one of the few that exclusively manufacture mechanical watches despite the progress of technology in watchmaking. To the company, few mechanisms match the complexity and perfection of a mechanical timepiece.
What would make you want an Oris to adorn your wrist? The Swiss company gives a few reasons.
Around since 1904
Oris was founded in 1904 by Paul Cattin and Georges Christian in Hölstein, Switzerland. The company started small, with only 24 employees on its payroll. The number of employees has increased tremendously in a matter of eight years, when Oris took under its wing 300 locals to build houses. This move made the company the largest employer at the area at the time. The efforts of these employees can still be visited in Hölstein today, where the company was stationed since the beginning.
A few decades more, Oris became among Switzerland’s top ten watchmaking companies in terms of manufactured timepieces under CEO Oscar Herzog’s direction. Within a matter of five years, it has produced the famed automatic movement, the caliber 645 with a 25-jewel lever escapement and was bestowed by the Neuchâtel Observatory a full chronometer certification for its movement caliber 652. The following decades still saw Oris innovating, and in 1991 it developed a complication that displayed moon phases, days, date and the option for a second time zone, a movement it called caliber 581. Oris may have propelled into the limelight for manufacturing functional and sensible watches but it has not rested on its laurels. The accomplishment only became a motivation for the company to allot more time in perfecting the craft.
Oris big crown pilot watch.
An independent streak
The Swiss may have many renowned watchmakers in its territory, but few can claim sovereign authority in their own company, Oris being among them. It is to their benefit that there has been little to no meddling in the direction of their watches, among the freedoms that an independent company can enjoy. Because of this, Oris has put all of its energy on making and innovating mechanical watches that it now categorizes into Diving, Culture, Motorsport and Aviation.
The red rotor that distinguishes the brand from the rest known among enthusiasts is slowly gaining more recognition, thanks the steadfast and undivided attention it has to developing its brand. The company takes a Oris’ High-Mech approach to building its watches to showcase how truly exceptional and admirable its locally made movements are.
Mechanical watches built for many years of enjoyment
Save for a brief venture into making quartz watches, Oris puts all its efforts into making perfect mechanical watches and adapts as necessary to cater to the changing needs of its customers. Each timepiece is crafted to be durable enough to last through the tough and the otherwise, allowing proud owners to enjoy the beautiful and intricate machines for many years to come. This is made possible by the people working behind the scenes, all of whom have a great attention to detail and unwavering passion for watchmaking.
The painstaking process of assembling a watch is meticulously done by a team of experts who take pride in what they do. If they do their job right, you won’t even notice it because the Oris watch will function seamlessly. Each watch has to be inspected using state of the art equipment to pass the standards of the company too, so that the overall reputation of the brand will be upheld and that you would feel that purchasing an Oris is worth it down to very last cent. Oris doesn’t let go of its responsibilities right after the purchase though, recognizing that part of owning a mechanical watch is the servicing it has to go through regularly. The team tasked to do this doesn’t cut around corners, and will make sure that each part of the complex piece works to deliver the Oris promise of a product you can enjoy for a long, long time.
Redesigned Oris Aquis Date 2017 collection
Great for a first watch, or a second, a third…
The Swiss watches from Oris make for great collectibles—the neat design and the fine details are prized by many fans. Its long history of producing beautiful mechanical timepieces will undoubtedly be continued for years as Oris does not think of stopping anytime in the future. It’s still going on its own way, giving its current and future patrons elaborately beautiful pieces that will give one a hankering to get another for the collection.
Oris shop at 1Utama Mall. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Faiz Zaki
Most men are not into lots of accessories. They wear just the minimal accessories often times. But these minimal accessories would always make the grandest impact. Take that swanky aviator sunglasses for example. And how about those buttery soft Italian leather wallets and shoes? And let us not forget those complex-looking and very masculine chronograph watches.
These very few accessories that men wear would absolutely lend them the most elegance and style. This is where the line “less is more” holds true. He could be wearing a basic t-shirt and khaki bermuda shorts paired with his favorite white leather sneakers but that Oris Williams Chronograph watch on his wrist is one great indication of his substantial charm, superior taste and unparalleled class. Because when it comes to excellent quality watches, Oris would be one of the names that would come to mind.
Commitment to employees
It all started when Paul Cattin and Georges Christian bought the just shut down Lohner & Co watch factory in Holstein, Switzerland on June 1, 1904. The company was named after a nearby brook, Oris. The company had the most number of employees in 1911 and built houses, apartments to attract more watchmakers to join Oris. Later on, it was duly noted that the company even run buses to shuttle employees to Holstein from towns as far as 25km. It was also the first company which offered employment opportunities to women.
Oris’ continued success in Holstein and brought about expansion in different locations. It opened factories in Holderbank, Como, Courgenay, Herbertswil and Ziefen in span of more than two decades. Oris began fitting its pocket watches with bracelet buckles, which eventually became wristwatches. The company also has its own electroplating factory and makes its own watch escapements particularly the pin-lever escapement (Roskopf escapement) as well. It even opened its own dial factory in Biel in 1936. But what the company was known for during WWII, more than wristwatches, are its alarm clocks.
Distinct and unique
Oris BC4 Der Mesisterflieger Automatic Men’s Watch. Reference number: 64976324164-LS. Photo: Youtube – iReviewWatches
In 1928, it was Oscar Herzog (Georges Christian’s brother in law) who became General Manager not shortly after Christian’s passing. He led Oris through difficult times in the watchmaking industry in the 20th century for 43 years.
In 1934, the Swiss government passed the “Watch Statute”, which prevents watch companies to use new watch technologies without permission. Oris has been using the pin-lever escapement at that time, which was said to be less accurate. Meanwhile, its competitors have already been using a lever escapement prior to the “Watch Statute”. However, in 1945, Oris received an award of distinction for its pin-lever escapement, proving that it is indeed as accurate as any lever escapement.
Oris’ four worlds
Oris introduced its first pilot watch named “Big Crown” in 1938 which has of course a big crown and a pointer calendar, the big crown enables pilots to adjust the watch with leather gloves on. Aviation became one of four Oris’ Worlds. The rest would be Culture, Diving and Motor Sports. The red winding rotor used by Oris became its trademark symbol for its automatic watches.
Oris also introduced Jazz series watches, which gave honor to the most iconic figures in the world of jazz, such as: John Coltrane, Dexter Gordon, Louis Armstrong, Miles Davis, Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker and many more Jazz legends.
The Aquis Depth Gauge introduced by Oris became a milestone in the watchmaking industry. It is the first diver’s watch ever to measure depth wherein water is allowed to enter the timepiece. It is also water resistant for up to 500 meters and has 50% thicker sapphire crystal than normal, as well as Super-LumiNOva coated dials for excellent underwater legibility. It is truly a professional diver’s watch.
Oris also introduced its Williams Chronograph range, which gives credit to one of the iconic names in Formula 1. The timepiece has an automatic winding chronograph, is made of stainless steel and has a sapphire crystal backing that shows the watch’s intricate movement.
So now we know what to get the men we love and look up to when we celebrate the milestones in their lives. They would definitely more than appreciate something that are of excellent quality, innovative, stylish, highly functional and useable just like these Swiss-made Oris watches. Nothing but the best for them, that’s for sure.
Oris 2018 Big Crown
Places to Shop for ORIS Watches Online