Omega's ultra-modern factory is no doubt among the most advanced production facilities in the watch industry. After the official speeches, we had the opportunity to have a brief tour inside and I must say that is an amazing environment to work. Shigeru Ban did a great job. Forget the image of the old watchmaker in his dusty manufacture. We are closer to Kubrik’s 2011 space odyssey with the automated stock and robotized testing. But but do not worry… the human still very present. Congrats to Omega and Swatch Group! What a fantastic way to spend CHF150m!
OMEGA’s newest factory is opened
The brand has proudly opened its newest production facility in Bienne, Switzerland
Signalling the next chapter in its renowned history of innovation and manufacturing excellence, the Swiss watchmaker OMEGA has officially opened its newest production building at the brand’s HQ site in Bienne, Switzerland. Honoured guests for the event included the CEO of Swatch Group, Mr. Nick Hayek; the President and CEO of OMEGA, Raynald Aeschlimann; and Head of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education & Research (EAER), Mr. Johann N. Schneider-Ammann.
Having first arrived on this site in 1882, the new building represents the industry’s most cutting-edge facility for watch assembly, training and quality control. Designed by the inspiring and award-winning Japanese architect Shigeru Ban, it is an eco-friendly masterpiece built with sustainable Swiss spruce and an ingenious indoor climate and energy concept. Inside, OMEGA has used the 5 floors of space in the most effective way possible, bringing technical innovation and human expertise together for a fully modernised manufacturing process.
Mr. Nick Hayek said: “OMEGA is producing watches at this historical site in the heart of Biel since 1882. OMEGA is and was a pioneer of innovation and excellence in the Swiss watch industry and worldwide. The strong tradition of investing in new technologies, new methods of production, but also in its own employees can again be seen through the achievement of this new splendid OMEGA factory. It reflects the brand’s commitment to the highest standards of watchmaking.”
Raynald Aeschlimann also gave his thoughts by saying: “Of course, we have created a truly innovative workspace, but the real value of this new building is efficiency. We have been able to now combine all of our assembly and testing processes under one roof. That means a complete consolidation of work that will help OMEGA to become much more productive and streamlined than ever before.”
All steps, including T2 (watch assembly), T3 (bracelets), and T4 (shipping), as well as stock and logistics, will now be completed inside the new building. In addition to this, it has been designed for training purposes, enabling OMEGA to sharpen and constantly improve the skills of the staff inside. At the core of the building, OMEGA has installed a fully automated storage system that rises up through 3 floors of the building. Like something from a science-fiction movie, the fireproofed system contains over 30,000 boxes filled with all the necessary stock required for the brand’s watchmaking. Importantly, the new building has also been created to house OMEGA’s quality and technical control processes, including the METAS testing for Master Chronometer certification. It is here that OMEGA will certify its watches at the industry’s highest standard for precision, performance and magnetic resistance.
With the opening of this new building, the future has certainly arrived for OMEGA. As a new generation of watch buyers emerges, the brand has now revolutionised its facilities in readiness to meet their demands.