From Waterbury Clock Company to Timex Group USA

Wed, May 25th, 2016 @ 2:11:25 PM - 

Timex Group USA is a subsidiary of the Dutch Timex Group BV. The other subsidiaries are the Timex Business Unit, Timex Group Luxury Watches, Sequel, Vertime, Vincent Bérard and Giorgio Galli Design Lab. The name was changed several times until 2008.
© captainvector / 123RF Stockfoto

1854–1944 – Waterbury Clock Company


Timex Group USA, Inc – Waterbury

Timex group USA werd in 1854 opgericht als Waterbury Clock Company. Together with other watch manufacturing companies, the company was located in Naugatuck Valley in Connecticut, nicknamed the “Switzerland of America” because of the large number of movements which were produced per year. Partnerships and purchase of one company by another occurred throughout history until only the Timex Group USA remained.

Originally the Waterbury Watch Company produced cheaper watches than European companies. The product line started with the large Jumbo pocket watch that caught Robert H. Ingersoll’s attention. Waterbury Clock Company partnered with Ingersoll Watch Company and massively started to produce the Ingersoll Yankee (a pocket watch worth $ 1) for Ingersoll.

In 1877/’78 the Long Wind produced inexpensive timepieces consisting of 58 parts at 200 units / day. Waterbury Clock Company united with Waterbury Watch Company to compensate for the lack of space. Poor selling techniques led to bankruptcy. At last Ingersoll Watch Company bought the plant and sold since 1914 Ingersoll watches.

Arrival of the wristwatch

Gunners in World War I needed a watch with which they could count and query the time without having to cease their activities. With a few tweaks Ingersoll Midget pocket watch for women could easily be converted. For example, a canvas belt and a lighted dial were added.

To resist the Great Depression Waterbury Clock Company hit an agreement with Disney in 1930 and produced Mickey Mouse watches under the brand Ingersoll.

1944–1969 – United States Time Corporation

Olsen and Lehmkuhl bought control of Waterbury Clock Company, renamed in 1943 as United States Time Corporation. Production declined in the 1950s at the end of the Korean War. The president, Lehmkuhl, believed in an inexpensive accurate and durable watch. He began producing timepieces in a simpler implementation than the Swiss watchmaking. Sustainability was contained in a metal produced thanks to the wartime research: armalloy. In 1950 was added an “X” that stood for technological excellence and innovation.

This new timepiece movement encountered resistance because of the traditional jewelers. Lehmkuhl was working on the long-term success, among others by launching commercials with a high diver, water skiers, a dolphin, dishwasher, jackhammers, paint mixers, outboard propeller and wherein a Timex watch was tortured.

Lehmkuhl also opened new distribution channels such as department stores, cigar stands, drugstores a. o. He added foreign markets with sales offices in Canada, Mexico, France, Great Britain, Germany, and Portugal. New factories were built in the United States, Europe, and Asia.

From 1950 United States Time Corporation became the exclusive manufacturer of Polaroid cameras until 1970.

1969-2008 – Timex Corporation

Zx81 timex manipulated

Zx81-Timex Sinclair 1000

The rise of cheap mechanical watches in the Far East and digital quartz watches in Japan destroyed the American watch industry in the 1970s and 1980s. New electronic and quartz technologies made Timex’s mechanical watch production facilities obsolete. Lehmkuhl retired and had no successor. Competition and end of contracts such as with Disney had a large number of dismissions as a result. Because of this decline, the company switched to the sale of home computers as the Timex Sinclair 1000, which came to an end in 1984 because of decreasing sales.

Ironman Triathlon in 1986

Timex 20th aniversary watch

Timex 20th aniversary watch

A redefinition of the company in 1980s resulted in the creation of the Ironman Triathlon in 1986. The most notable improvements were a longer battery life, more durable gold plating, greater accuracy and more water resistant styles. Production time and cost were reduced. Top athletes assisted in determining the design of sports watches for specific sports. Timex Ironman immediately became a bestseller in the United States and was the sports movement with the highest sales in the world next decade.

Indiglo 1992

The success of the Ironman Triathlon series followed the introduction of Indiglo during the Christmas shopping season in 1992. Indiglo drew headlines in january 1993 with the bombing of the World Trade Center [LATimes artikel, 5de par.]

Disney Classics Collection 1993

Timex Corporation acquired Callanen International, producer of Guess Watches in 1991 as part of its “multi-brand strategy”. Timex and Disney reunited in 1993 to produce a new series of character timepieces, namely the Disney Classics Collection.

Timex Data Link 1994

In 1994 Timex acquired the Nautica Watches license and introduced the Timex Data Link. The DataLink PDA-type watch could receive contact and schedule information from a sequence into a computer monitor’s light using Microsoft software.

Timex Expedition 1997

1997 saw the introduction of the successful Timex Expedition brand, designed for rugged outdoor sports. Timex and Motorola introduced Beepwear in 1998, a watch with an integrated pager.

2008-… – Timex Group USA, Inc.

[dfads params=’groups=88&limit=1&orderby=random’]A restructuring of the company in 2008 Timex Business Unit became a separate business unit for Timex brand with its own president. After this change introduced Timex GPS watches for heart rate monitoring and comparable high-tech devices.

That same year, Timex Group USA signed a four-year deal for the timing of the ING New York City Marathon.

In late 2008, the Timex Group USA Middlebury CT Headquarters built an array of 800 solar panels and inaugurated it on February 5, 2009.

By fusion with the Callanen International business unit came Timex, Opex, TX, Nautica and Marc Ecko brands all under Timex Group USA.



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