TUDOR REIGNS
Business Traveller UK|February 2020
Tudor ’s Black Bay watch has been at the heart of the brand’s renaissance over the past decade
CHRIS HALL

For the past decade Tudor has been moving into an extremely enviable position. In the main, its offerings sit at the very narrow centre of the Venn diagram where good looks, value for money and Swiss pedigree intersect, and it has established itself as not only a powerful rival to the likes of Tag Heuer but as the darling of a new collector scene.

Tudor as a brand has been around since 1946, created by Rolex founder Hans Wilsdorf, who had registered the name 20 years earlier and saw it as a more affordable alternative to his all-conquering sports watches. The reason it bears this evocative name is twofold: Wilsdorf was a complete Anglophile – Rolex, after all, was founded in the UK – and was obsessed with the symmetry and marketing power of five-letter names. (It’s fair to say that, prescient as he was, he had not foreseen a time when it would have to compete in search engine rankings with Henry VII and his descendants.)

Like most watch brands, it enjoyed a heyday in the 1960s and ’70s but, to cut the story extremely short, by the 2000s Tudor was in the doldrums; its watches unremarkable and uncompetitive. A complete overhaul was initiated, and it burst back into life in 2010.

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