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Jaeger-LeCoultre: The Watchmaker of Watchmakers

Iñigo Ohlsson presenting the Jaeger-LeCoultre  Dazzling Rendez-Vous Moon and Polaris Date Blue
Iñigo Ohlsson presenting the Jaeger-LeCoultre Dazzling Rendez-Vous Moon and Polaris Date Blue

Iñigo Ohlsson, Jaeger-LeCoultre’s managing director for Southeast Asia & Oceania, admits that his background is atypical for someone in the watch industry. His foray into the horological world did not begin until he joined Jaeger-LeCoultre as country manager for Mexico in 2011; and before that he had worked in other industries across different regions around the world.  

But Jaeger-LeCoultre has proved to be a great fit nonetheless for Ohlsson, who has had an affinity for the brand since being gifted a Reverso in his teens.

“As a consumer,” he said, “I [have chosen] to wear Jaeger-LeCoultre because I appreciate its understated sophistication.  I wear it not because I want to show off; most people won’t know what it is I’m wearing. But whoever knows, I’ll form a very particular association with because of it.”  

When asked what else he thinks sets the brand apart from other luxury Swiss watch brands, Ohlsson is quick to say that it’s the culture at the manufacture. “When you visit, you’ll come across people in the corridors, and every single time that happens, they will say hello. This familial atmosphere in Jaeger-LeCoultre is unique.” 

And the feeling of family isn’t just because the people working there happen to like each other; there are real family ties because generations of families work at the manufacture. “At some point,” Ohlsson shared, “we had three generations concurrently employed by Jaeger-LeCoultre.”

The draw for watchmakers and their children to come work for the manufacture is the chance to be part of continuous innovation. No other watch brand can boast having developed over 1,200 calibers in-house, and there is a limited number of other brands that release several new calibers every year. As Ohlsson put it, Jaeger-LeCoultre is the watchmaker of watchmakers. 

Ohlsson added, “The watchmakers of Jaeger-LeCoultre are challenged and motivated by the way we work and what we can accomplish and produce. In one year, our watchmakers may be working on a carillon. The next year, they’d be working on a tourbillon set in a Reverso. The year after that, they could be working on something like the Gyrotourbillon.” 

But in recent years, Jaeger-LeCoultre has been working to improve not just the quality of their watches, but their value proposition as well. On this Ohlsson said, “We realized that there’s been a shift over the years to what is perceived as valuable for the people that choose watches; we need to provide more [after-sales] service, and be closer to the end user.” 

With that, the Jaeger-LeCoultre Care Program was created. The most popular benefit of the program has been the eight-year warranty, which was a first in the industry when it was introduced earlier this year. Other perks include free periodic evaluations and a platform where customers can register their timepieces and get information about the products. 

Ohlsson says that this new platform has given the brand a better connection to their clients and that, in true Jaeger-LeCoultre fashion, “we will continue to evolve it in the future.”  


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