Zenith, creator of the El Primero movement in 1969, is teaming up with the famous British rock stars the Rolling Stones, with the launch of a new El Primero Chronomaster 1969.
The announcement was made on June 1st, by Jean-Claude Biver, Director of the LVMH Group Watch Division and Tom Bennett, Chief Executive Officer for Bravado, Universal Music Group’s global music merchandising division. The watch will be the first in a series of limited edition watches by Zenith.
June 2014 – Letzigrund Stadium, Zurich, Switzerland. Among tens of thousands of fans gathering to marvel at the living legends of rock, the Rolling Stones is one fan not exactly like the others; Jean-Claude Biver, Director of the LVMH Group Watch Division. He is there for enjoyment, of course, but besides that he is the proud representative of the Zenith brand, one of the brands now under his supervision, which is now launching a first – since others are to follow – limited series in tribute to the Rolling Stones: the El Primero Chronomaster 1969.
This 250-piece limited edition is a smart blend of DNA from Zenith and the Rolling Stones. Hence the two chronograph counters, 30-minute at 3 o’clock and 12-hour at 6 o’clock, are bedecked in the same colours as the original El Primero model of 1969, namely midnight blue for the former and slate grey for the latter. The 12-hour chronograph is also overlaid with the famed Rolling Stones logo, the iconic red tongue and lip design. These historic colours are associated with the iconic aperture in the dial over the beating heart of the movement, a signature of the Zenith manufacture. On the case-back, a sapphire crystal engraved with this same tongue inscribed with “The Rolling Stones Edition” reveals the El Primero 4061 movement, the world’s most accurate mass-produced mechanical calibre – which beats at a frequency of 10 vibrations per second, timing to 1/10th of a second.
For Jean-Claude Biver, “Disruptive thinking gave birth in the 1960s to the first (El Primero) chronograph movement timing to one 10th of a second. The same 'outside the box' thinking gave birth to the new Blues and rock n’roll music. Both Zenith and The Rolling Stones are today living legends. No wonder that they are now teaming up.”
The Rolling Stones commented: ‘‘We are delighted to be teaming up with such a wonderful brand as Zenith for our ‘14 On Fire’ tour’’. Bennett added, “We’re thrilled to work with Zenith to launch the Rolling Stones limited edition watches. As we continue to support the Rolling Stones in reaching out to their fanbase, this timepiece will appeal to the die-hard Rolling Stones fan and as well as collectors of genuine manufactured watches.”
With this new partnership, Zenith’s slogan “Follow your own star” comes into its own, and will accompany the group throughout its world tour “14 On Fire.” This will be an opportunity for it to re-assert its values – Authenticity, Daring and Pleasure – and to introduce its new timepiece to a resolutely hip public. Since even after 50 years of rocking, the Rolling Stones still continue to unleash passions…
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Founded in Le Locle in 1865 by a visionary watchmaker, Georges Favre-Jacot, the Manufacture Zenith earned swift recognition for the precision of its chronometers with which it has won 2,333 chronometry prizes in a century and a half of existence: an absolute record in terms of pocket watches, onboard timers and wristwatches. Having earned fame thanks to its legendary El Primero calibre – an integrated automatic column-wheel chronograph movement launched in 1969 and endowed with a high frequency of 36,000 vibrations per hour that ensures measurements accurate to the nearest 1/10th of a second – the Manufacture Zenith has since developed over 600 movement variations. The latter currently stands at the exact spot where its founder built the first company workshop, thus physically embodying a continuity that is a rarity in itself.
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