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Watches behind the numbers

Martha Taylor-Brown |
Christian Bédat devised a global brand concept based on the strong values of differentiation, timelessness, elegance and sophistication.

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Born in 1931 in Lugnez, Switzerland, Simone Bédat began an apprenticeship at the Lang SA watch-case manufacturer at the age of fifteen. She stayed there for about a decade before joining the Camy watch company in Geneva, where she worked in close cooperation with a certain Raymond Weil. After the owner’s death, they both left Camy and joined forces to create the Raymond Weil brand, in 1975.

Christian Bédat was born in 1964 and after graduating from the H.E.C. business school in Lausanne in 1987, he left for Hong Kong to work for Eco Swiss China Time, heading the production of Benetton watches by Bulova. In 1990, he joined Raymond Weil in Geneva. On October 8th 1996, Simone and Christian Bédat founded BEDAT & C°. Just six months after the brand was created, Christian Bédat presented its global concept along with two collections: N°3 and N°7, which were an immediate success. Each BEDAT & C° watch was the fruit of his personal reflection, his knowledge of watchmaking history, his experience and his desires. He leaved the company in October 2006.

When BEDAT &C° was launched in 1997, Christian Bédat devised a global brand concept based on the strong values of differentiation, timelessness, elegance and sophistication. Within the watchmaking world, watch names are rarely consistent with the timepiece itself or with the brand. That is why the four BEDAT &C° collections carry numbers. Representing a unique phenomenon within the watch business, this naming principle gives the watch lines a definite form of cohesion.

The numbers also offer many other advantages in that they are easy to memorize, universal and pronounceable in all languages. Moreover, they embody powerful symbolism. For example, the figure eight, which is both the BEDAT &C° logo and the name of the collection of round watches, is the symbol of infinity. It is often represented by an hourglass.

The numerals distinguish the collections, each imbued with its own distinctive harmon.y Collection N°3 features an elegant “tonneau” shaped case, waisted at 6 and 12 o’clock and interpreted in various sizes. The eminently sophisticated rectangular lines of Collection N°7 watches, waisted at 3 and 9 o’clock, are softened by subtly rounded curves on certain models. The refined and inimitably stylish square shape of Collection N°1 is waisted at 3 and 9 o’clock. Collection N°8 of BEDAT&CO is based on a “circle in a cushion” shape that lends these watches a unique contemporary touch.


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