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Swiss quality in a class of its own
The Pilot Watch Magazine
06 May 2024

Timepieces from the inventors of the Swiss Army Knife

The story of Victorinox began towards the end of the century before last, when in 1884 the Swiss cutler and entrepreneur Karl Elsener, with the support of his mother, opened a business for the manufacture of knives and surgical instruments in the tranquil village of Ibach, in the canton of Schwyz – the birth of the Victorinox brand. The company name is a combination of Victoria, the first name of Karl Elsener’s mother, and Inox, the name for stainless steel.

In 1891, Elsener founded the Association of Swiss Cutlers and began supplying the Swiss Army with so-called soldier’s knives for the first time. These serve as practical tools for eating and maintaining weapons. Based on this idea, he continuously develops his range of products and in 1897 has the Swiss Officer’s and Sport Knife legally protected. Today, this unique knife is known around the world as the Original Swiss Army Knife.

It requires true craftsmanship to create the perfect balance between technical precision and elegant design.


Functionality and quality for the highest demands

At the end of the 1980s, the family-owned company, which is still run by descendants of the company’s founder, broadened its range of products. In addition to a colorful assortment of knives, the global multi-product brand now also manufactures and sells luggage and perfume and, since 1989, wristwatches in a wide variety of collections – including attractive models for pilots. Victorinox timepieces are predominantly manufactured in Switzerland and – whether mechanical or modern quartz movement – meet the highest standards in terms of design as well as functionality and quality. In particular, the unobtrusive simplicity of many models underlines the special character of the timelessly elegant chronometers with the Swiss flag in the logo.

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