The development of a watch is preceded by an idea.
Armin Strom AG has its roots in the picturesque town of Burgdorf located northwest of Bern. The history of the watch factory begins with the founder and namesake of the business, Armin Strom. After completing his watchmaking apprenticeship and gaining early independent business experiences in Lotzwil and St. Moritz, the still young Armin Strom opened his own shop in the Altstadt (Old Town) area of Burgdorf in the year 1967. In addition to selling and restoring watches, he soon began working on his own creations in the workroom behind the shop. His first masterpiece was a gold pocket watch, with a hand-engraved dial in polished blue lapis lazuli. His mature manual dexterity and incredible attention to detail soon made the budding watchmaker aware of where to specialize in his valuable items: the art of skeletonizing.
His idea of cutting away all the parts of the movement which have no active function for its operation characterizes the appearance of Armin Strom watches to this day. He then set about engraving and decorating the remaining parts with intricate detailing and fitting them into fine cases, all with the greatest of care. Although initially available only from his shop, creations from Armin Strom were first presented at the internationally renowned Basel Watch and Jewellery Fair in 1984. The business really took off from that time.
These incomparable timepieces soon came to the attention of the media, and customers from all over the world began to show an interest in the unique, hand-skeletonized masterpieces from the Burgdorf watchmaker. The Armin Strom collection had grown to 20 models by the mid-1980s, and during this period the master himself was always pleased to adapt or decorate his movements according to the wishes of individual customers.
Finally, building on the successes of his men’s watches, Armin Strom also ventured into the production of his first wristwatch for women. His goal of designing this to be as small and delicate as possible immediately gained him an entry in The Guinness Book of World Records as the smallest watch ever to be skeletonized by hand.
His excellent reputation and recognition at an international level brought Armin Strom major contracts in the 1990s from some prestigious watch companies, for which he would skeletonize a number of series by hand. In the meantime, his own brand was expanding continuously as the result of increasing demand from all over the world. The company was incorporated as Armin Strom AG in 2006, and in 2009 it moved into its new, large production facility in the watchmaking town of Biel. In 2009, the first in-house Manufacture-Calibre, the ARM09 was proudly presented.
Since end of September 2011 the successful entrepreneur and founding father of Armin Strom AG is taking a well-deserved retirement. The legendary master watchmaker celebrated his 73rd birthday this year. It is time for Armin Strom, the man, to pull back from the hectic daily business routine, spend some quality time with his family and enjoy his other passions away from the manufacture. Armin Strom AG would like to thank its founder and is proud to be able to continue to build on his name and visionary values. At the same time, it will be happy in future to welcome him as the spirit of the Armin Strom Brand at promotions and events.
The first in-house calibre ARM09 was followed by other manual winding calibres and the most recent, the Tourbillon calibre ATC11 was celebrated with a strictly limited set of 4 exceptional timepieces – The “Coffret” Tourbillon. Armin Strom AG today has a workforce of 19 and looks back with pride over nearly half a century of watchmaking tradition.