Hans Wilsdorf: German watchmaker (1881 - 1960) | Biography, Facts, Information, Career, Wiki, Life
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Hans Wilsdorf
German watchmaker

Hans Wilsdorf

Hans Wilsdorf
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro German watchmaker
Was Businessperson Watchmaker Entrepreneur
From United Kingdom Germany
Field Business
Gender male
Birth 23 March 1881, Kulmbach
Death 6 July 1960, Geneva (aged 79 years)
Hans Wilsdorf
The details (from wikipedia)


Hans Wilsdorf (March 22, 1881 - July 6, 1960) was a German watchmaker, and the founder of noted watch brands Rolex and Tudor.
Born in Kulmbach, Germany and orphaned as a child, Wilsdorf worked for a Swiss watch manufacturer in La Chaux-de-Fonds. In 1905, he moved to London and set up his own business, wanting to provide quality timepieces at affordable prices.
In 1908, he created the Rolex brand under which to sell his watches, and during World War I, he left England for Switzerland due to wartime tax increases levied on luxury imports. In 1920, he established Montres Rolex S.A. in Bienne. The name "Rolex" was given because it is easily pronounceable in many languages. It was also short enough to fit on the face of his watches. Wilsdorf ultimately moved his company to Geneva in 1919.
By the start of World War II Royal Air Force pilots were buying Rolex watches to replace their inferior standard-issue watches. However, when captured and sent to POW camps, their watches were confiscated. When Wilsdorf heard of this, he offered to replace all watches that had been confiscated and not require payment until the end of the war, if the officers would write to Rolex and explain the circumstances of their loss and where they were being held. Wilsdorf was in personal charge of the scheme.
Wilsdorf also established the high-quality, lower-priced watch brand Tudor, a subsidiary company of Rolex in 1946. Upon the death of his wife Florence Frances May Crotty in 1944, he established the Hans Wilsdorf Foundation, to which he left all of his shares in Rolex, making sure that an amount of the company's income would go to charity. The company remains a foundation to the present day. Wilsdorf died in Geneva, Switzerland on July 6, 1960.

The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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