More than a century of innovations
The history of Rolex started in 1905. Hans Wilsdorf - then a 24-year old - founded a company specialised in watch retailing in London.
He is already dreaming of wristwatches and, even if these are not accurate enough yet, he aims at convincing potential buyers of the reliability of these watches by including small and very precise Swiss movements.
In 1908, he chose to name his watch brand Rolex and continued to bank on the quality and precision of the movements he chose. And in 1910, one of his Rolex watches was the first to get the official Swiss test certificate for a wristwatch - the certificate being issued by the Official watch testing center in Bienne. In 1914, the Rolex wristwatch got a new certificate: that of Class “A” precision - a distinction previously reserved for navy chronometers.
In 1920, following a move to Geneva the previous year, the Rolex SA firm was born.
In 1926, Rolex created the first water and dust-resistant watch (name Oyster). And one year later, the same watch was crossing the English Channel at the wrist of an English swimmer!
In 1931, Rolex created an ingenious system allowing for a watch to be winded by one’s wrist motions. This automatic winding system gave birth to all those we find today in modern automatic watches !