In this highly competitive world, many individuals, organizations, and brands desire to be on top of their game. But success is not built and earned overnight. This often takes years, decades, and even centuries to be established before receiving much-anticipated recognition.
There could be much more than the timekeeping functions of each piece these valuable items provide for such items to be sold at high prices and yet still find a market for it. Moreso, there could also be speciality about the brand Rolex to be distinguished and make its name standout among other competitors in the industry.
When talking about luxury and high-end timepieces, we may come across few names but what is certain is almost anyone, collector or a complete clueless on the essence of such items one maybe, would think of a Rolex watch at the top of their list. Here are some of the reasons why this brand is still on the top.
1. Rolex is the brand of many firsts.
In 1910, Rolex was the first wristwatch to receive the Swiss Certificate of Precision by the Official Watch Rating Centre in Bienne, Switzerland and was previously only awarded to marine chronometers. In 1926, the Rolex Oyster was recognized as the first waterproof and dustproof watch with a tightly sealed case protecting the delicate movement inside it. In 1953, a new Oyster was born: the Rolex Explorer, which is designed for greater durability, double waterproofing, and a hefty all-steel bracelet. Now, Rolex is flag shipped as the brand trusted by professionals in almost every discipline.
2. The brand uses materials like no other.
This could already be known to watch collectors, but Rolex is the only brand (yet) to use 904L stainless steel on its bracelets that is far beyond the industry standard and what other brands use called 316L.
The company also made use of the latter quality of stainless steel but in 2003, the brand moved and changed its entire steel production to 904L which is more rust and corrosion resistant, as well as harder than other steels. This undeniably costs higher and demands much complex machining.
3. The company has its science lab.
It is no surprise that a high-end brand such as Rolex, manufacturing delicate and intricate timepieces has its Research and Development department but the brand does not only have one but several science laboratories inside its facilities. The team is responsible for researching up-to-date information and innovative techniques for the manufacturing processes, and even in the creation of the design of the timepieces.
Some of their labs include a chemistry lab that is filled with all of these beakers, test tubes, and different liquids and lubricants that are used to maintain machine functionalities in each process. There is also this stress test laboratory where every watch part: the movement, the dial, the bracelet, and cases, undergo extensive simulated wear and abuse instances using custom-made robots. It is therefore a pretty good assumption that each Rolex watch you will be encountering can withstand a lifetime or two.
4. The company creates its movements, hand-assembled and tested.
Though the Rolex brand undeniably has one of the most advanced technologies with regards to the machines and techniques they are using, everything from movements to bracelets is still all hand-assembled by only the best skilled and trained workers.
It is just so into quality control as every part, material, and even at every process, everything is checked, rechecked, then checked again. This is to ensure that the expected precision, design, and overall quality output is met before a timepiece is sent to Contrôle Officiel Suisse des Chronomètres (COSC) for chronometer certification.
5. The company has an infantry of gemologists.
Rolex has this special department composed of gemologists whose duty is to buy, inspect, test, and arrange precious stones such as diamonds, rubies, and emeralds, and ensure everything is real and of top quality.
Each stone that you can see in a Rolex watch is carefully hand-selected and hand-set that has undergone delicate examination and great artisanship anyone would not overlook. Actually, according to Rolex reports, since the beginning that it has been checking and inspecting diamonds, only two in 20 million diamonds have been fake. This shows how extensive and detailed the process is, just to make certain that nothing is compromised.
6. A Single piece takes a year to manufacture.
The company produces almost a million timepieces each year, but what is fascinating is each piece also takes a year to be produced. The brand has always been into evolution and innovation to ensure the techniques, machines, and every other significant detail in the production of every timepiece is of great quality and not left behind. Moreover, after parts of the watch are completed which are mostly hand-assembled, these undergo further individual testings that are rather extensive.
7. The company makes almost every part in-house.
Rolex brand makes gold and platinum in-house. 24k gold that comes into Rolex are turned into 18k white, yellow, or Rolex’s Everose gold, their non-fading version of 18k rose gold. These are put into large kilns under extreme pressure and temperature to melt and mix metals that are turned into bracelets and cases. The brand, if not the only one, is one of the few brands that has its real in-house foundry, that is why not only the quality is ensured, but also the unique and delicate design like no other.
In a Nutshell
We can see that even in the coming ages, luxury timepieces will never go out of style because there will always be eyes that see the value behind every timepiece. All the intricate details, years of expertise by only the best craftsmen, top-quality materials, high caliber pieces of machinery, and extensive research combined in a high-end timepiece product only justify the pricing, the hype, and the overall branding. Having said all of these, Rolex, time and time again, proves why it was, and it is still on top of its game. It does not stop to reinvent, innovate, and try new methods to live upon the brand and reputation it has built for itself all throughout these years.