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() is a Swiss luxury watch
manufacturer based in Geneva, Switzerland
Originally founded as Wilsdorf and Davis
by Hans Wilsdorf
and Alfred Davis in London
in 1905, the company registered Rolex
as the brand name of its watches in 1908 and became Rolex Watch Co. Ltd.
After World War I
, the company moved its base of operations to Geneva, Switzerland to the unfavorable economic situation in post-war Britain
, and in 1920 Hans Wilsdorf registered Montres Rolex SA
in Geneva as the new company name which eventually became Rolex SA
in later years.
Since 1960, the company has been owned by the Hans Wilsdorf Foundation, a private family trust.
Rolex SA and its subsidiary Montres Tudor SA
design, manufacture, distribute and service wristwatches sold under the Rolex and Tudor brands. In 2018, Forbes
ranked Rolex as the world's 71st most valuable brand.
As of June 2019, among the world's top ten most expensive watches ever sold at auctions
, three are Rolex watches. In particular, Paul Newman
's Rolex Daytona
currently holds the title of the second most expensive wristwatch
and the third most expensive watch ever sold at auction, fetching 17.75 million US dollars in New York
on October 26, 2017.
Rolex is the largest manufacturer of Swiss made
certified chronometers. In 2005, more than half the annual production of watches certified by Contrôle Officiel Suisse des Chronomètres (COSC
) were Rolexes.
To date, Rolex still holds the record for the most certified chronometer movements in the category of wristwatches.
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