1900, at the Paris World Fair. At the foot of the Eiffel Tower, a century was ending whilst another began. Symbol of this link between two eras, the OMEGA brand received the international jury's Grand Prix for the excellence of its collection, including the prestigious Greek Temple watch in chased solid gold.
By 1900, with an annual production of 200.000 pieces and nearly 1000 employees, Omega had already become Switzerland first watch manufacturer.
The founding of Louis Brandt's watch assembly workshop in La Chaux-de-Fonds dated back in 1848, the same years as the Swiss Confederation. In 1880, Louis Brandt's sons relocated the plant to the flats of Bienne where manpower, energy and communication lines were more accessible.
The Bienne company was the first watch enterprise to abandon the assembly workshop system, in favour of a true modern factory producing all its own parts. The introduction of Switzerland's first "divided assembly system" based on the inter-changeability of standardized parts enabled the firm to turn out top precision watches of irreproachable quality at competitive prices. The famous "Omega" 19-line calibre created in 1894 soon became the firm's symbol of excellence-and the namesake of the entire company.
From that time forward, at the forefront of watchmaking know-how, the Omega brand was pioneered in every domain where man dares to surpass his limits.
Technical Performance, Human Achievement
A proven champion of precision since 1848, Omega moved quite naturally into sports timing beginning in 1909. In Los Angeles in 1932, the brand was named official timekeeper of all Olympic games disciplines for the first time. A privilege Omega has held twenty-one times over the course of the century. In 1952, Omega itself stepped onto the winners' podium to receive the Olympic Cross of Merit for "outstanding service to the world of sports". An award for the unfailing reliability of Omega timekeeping and its numerous innovations, like the first 1/1000 of a second Photofinish camera, the world's first electronic timing and the Omegascope's elapsed race time superimposed on the TV screen. Omega is also the inventor of the giant video matrix scoreboards installed in the most modern sports stadiums around the world.