Interview with founder of Chronoswiss: Gerd R Lang

Posted on October 21, 2010

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When it comes to CEO biodata, it’s a common practice to list their various academic accomplishments right off within the first paragraph. You won’t find it on Mr Lang’s fact sheet, truth is, he’d be rather candid in telling you that he wasn’t very good at it and that his teachers encouraged his father to let him pick up a trade skill and drop out of school; their loss, our gain.

Gerd-R. Lang, all of 18 years old didn’t even want to pick watchmaking as a trade, he was pushed into it by his father and as testament to how often “father knows best”, it turns out that Lang would find himself finally excelling in this venerable craft.

Gerd R Lang was a watchmaking apprentice at Heuer

“I started Chronoswiss to help save the Swiss watch industry. I believe in longevity of a timepiece that can last 3 generations unlike mass manufactured quartz rubbish.” – Chronoswiss Founder Gerd R Lang

In Switzerland and in apprenticeship at then Heuer (now TAG Heuer), the Brunswick-born native would find himself at the Swiss industry’s major crossroads. Witness to the 1960s quartz crisis that forced closure on many centuries old brands and nearly ended Swiss mechanical watchmaking as an industry, Lang was asked to leave a desperate and rapidly downsizing Heuer where he had spent the better part of 18 years refining his craft.

Chronoswiss Regulateur Automatique. A 22 year old venerable design.

His Favourite Watch
Personally, I wear the Chronoswiss Regulateur Automatique. Cortina also asked us to make a special edition Grand Opus Grand Prix, so that must be popular in the region.

Invented by Lanf in 1982, it was never patented. Find out why in the November issue.

His Gift to Horology
The crystal case back. First invented in 1982. Now widely copied by all major watchmakers. (You can read the reason why he didn’t patent the idea in the Nov issue)

Sauterelle "Grasshopper" Jumping seconds mimics the quartz 1 second beat for greater accuracy

His Next Big Project
The Sauterelle “grasshopper” Jumping seconds brand new manufacture calibre

His Top 5 Luxury Brands
Zegna for suits. Audi and Jaguar for cars. His pen- Pelikan. Burberry.

A self professed watch aficionado, Jonathan Ho is the editor, publishing his reviews and interviews on luxury watchmaking, definitive men’s style and social commentary over at www.augustman.com. You can also follow his tweets at TheSoliloguy on Twitter.
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Posted in: watches