Founded in Hamburg in 1906, Montblanc has long been an undisputed master of producing writing instruments, stationary and premium leather goods. It wasn’t until 1997 that the world-famous brand with the ‘snow peak’ logo entered into the sphere of watchmaking, making them one of the youngest brands in the exalted world of haute horlogerie. When Norbert Platt, the Montblanc CEO at the time of the launch, faced the watch industry press experts and collectors, he endured jibes such as, “Where do you fill it with ink?” and allowed the watches to speak for themselves. The jokes soon ceased when the outstanding quality, craftsmanship and innate sense of style shone through.
Montblanc is part of the Richemont Group and a major element of the brand’s stratospheric rise to the highest levels of the watch universe came with Richemont’s acquisition of Minerva in 2006, a historically significant watch manufacture specialising in chronographs and high-quality movements. It was a wise strategy as the know-how was swiftly absorbed. Montblanc watches stand up to the scrutiny of the most knowledgeable watch connoisseurs. Today, Montblanc create fine wristwatches that range from a few thousand euros, right up to astonishingly fine complications that are the pinnacle of haute horlogerie and command six and seven-figure sums.
By: Nick Rice