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September 11, 2009

Investment And Development At Armin Strom SA Despite The Economic Crisis!

By Pardhasaradhi Gonuguntla

Watchmaking has found a new home in Biel! The distinguished Armin Strom brand, which has a long tradition of craftsmanship, has moved into new premises at 46 Bözingenstrasse, Biel, Switzerland. Light and spacious watchmaking ateliers and modern, high-precision machines enable the watchmaker to manufacture its own movements. At the same time, new watchmakers and apprentices have joined to meet the growing demand for the refined brand.

The substantial investments were feasible due to the investor and majority shareholder Mr. Willy Michel.

In addition to a number of traditional machines including a lathe, a drill/milling machine and a grinder, the lower ground floor houses four numerically controlled production machines. Here is a brief description of their main functions:

Three-axis machining center: Used mainly for the machining of bridges and main plates.

Three-axis machining centre Wire electro-erosion machine: Cuts components such as levers, springs, wheels and pallet forks.

Bar turning machine/automatic CNC lathe: Used to make among many other parts: pins, screws, pinions, axles, wheels and barrels.

Milling machine: Cuts our wheels, pinions and other pieces by generation. It also enables us to mill radial teeth for sliding pinions and conical teeth.

Finally, thanks to an optical control system, we are able to check the form of the manufactured pieces by comparing them to the designs. It also enables us to take precise measurements.

The main reception is on the first floor, as well as the conference room, watchmaking ateliers and galvanizing ateliers; not to forget the decorating shop where hand engraving and polishing such as snailing, sunray brushing and the Côte de Genève decoration is carried out.

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The management offices, sales and public relations departments and additional meeting rooms are located on the second and top floors.

Staff numbers at Armin Strom SA have also grown in line with the company’s expansion. We currently have no fewer than 16 employees across all the various departments and since summer 2009, we have also been training apprentice watchmakers.

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