Marked the birth of Francziszek Czapek in Semonice Bohemia kingdom (nowadays Czech Republic). He immigrated to Poland with his family during his youth, keeping both his Czech and Polish nationalities.
François Czapek was a Czech-born Polish watchmaker who arrived in Switzerland in 1832 after the fall of the Polish insurrection. He was a remarkable watchmaker, and soon after his arrival, in 1832, he created with a local Swiss from Versoix, his first ‘Enterprise’, CZAPEK & MOREAU.
François Czapek and Antoine Norbert de Patek, both Polish emigrants, survivors of an insurrection that had forced them to flee, met in 1836. This encounter changed their lives. Czapek invited his countryman Patek to delve into the realm of watchmaking. Together they founded the company Patek, Czapek & Cie on May 1. 1839.
The partnership between François Czapek and Antoine Norbert de Patek lasted six years. During that time, they created several exceptional timepieces. At the end of their contract, in April 1845, each man went his own way. Czapek founded Czapek & Cie on May 1, and was soon joined by a new partner, Julius Gruzewski.
Czapek was quickly recognized as one of the greatest watchmakers of the nineteenth century. Purveyor to the Imperial Court, Watchmaker of His Imperial Highness, the Prince Napoleon. At its height, the company had boutiques in Geneva, Warsaw and Paris, Place Vendôme. He wrote a book on watchmaking, one of the first of its kind ever written in Polish.
The Czapek company name was re-established in 2012. The three entrepreneurs behind ts revival decided to take an unusual route for the relaunch of the Company: to share it with fellow watch lovers. They created a library of Czapek timepieces to understand his work and personality, and worked on new designs as if he was seated with them having traveled through time.
On November 10, 2015, the company was relaunched in front of journalists, friends and watch lovers in Geneva. Fellow enthusiasts were given the opportunity to take part in the great adventure of Czapek's revival, by investing through an equity crowdfunding campaign. The company became the first Haute Horlogerie Company revived by watch connoisseurs worldwide.
Czapek & Cie wins the coveted Public Prize at the Grand Prix d'Horlogerie de Genève, the Oscars of Haute Horlogerie. A true recognition from a public connoisseurs who rewarded the beauty and the horological quality of the Quai des Bergues No. 33bis. The award would have made François Czapek proud.
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