The Federation de I’industrie Horlogere Suisse isn’t just a mouthful to say, it’s the regulator of the Swiss Watch Industry, and it’s made some pretty dicey decisions lately.
In a move to stop the consistent decline of Swiss watch sales, the FHE announced that new regulations were going to be put in place to keep the “Swiss Made” name less tarnished. They announced that starting January 1st, 2017, they were upping the percentage required to tag the watch as “Swiss Made” from 50% to 60%. The Announcement is below:
You may recognize it trending on Instagram and FaceBook as #MakeSwissMadeGreatAgain. Some brands are behind it entirely, and some brands still think it’s insufficient. Largely heralded and fought by H. Moser & Cie, the insufficiency of 60% doesn’t bode well. As “protest” they announced they will forego the “Swiss Made” label on ALL of their timepieces starting in 2017. Will other brands follow suit?
A lot of the larger brands will be unaffected by this, as they are mostly developed and sourced straight out of Switzerland, but it’s hard to say how this 10% increase in Swiss parts will affect the little guy. Will it just cause cheaper manufactures to pop up to source cheaper and less quality parts? Or will it force these KickStarter brands to actually back up the claims that they’re “Turning the industry on its head”?