Needed: 25,000 Watchmakers by 2003

September 1998

Timepieces:Data & Statistics

Needed: 25,000 Watchmakers by 2003

It's no secret good watchmakers are hard to find. But with the rapid sales of more complicated timepieces in recent years, the service demand has only just begun.

In five years, about 21 million mechanical and quartz watches will need to be repaired, readjusted, tweaked or completely overhauled, according to estimates by Swiss watchmaker extraordinaire Antoine Simonin, head of the Watchmakers of Switzerland Training and Education Program. And that's only Swiss watches!

With this number of medium- to top-priced timepieces in need of service, expect the demand for watchmakers to continue unabated, says William Ewbank, executive director of the American Watchmakers-Clockmakers Institute, Harrison, OH.

Simonin generates the estimates based on these figures:

  • By 2003, about 70 million complicated quartz and mechanical timepieces will have been made by Swiss companies in the previous decade.
  • About 30% (21 million) of these timepieces will have been returned to manufacturers for overhauls by 2003.
  • The trained watchmaker-repairer can overhaul about three timepieces per day, or about 800 per year.
  • Based on all these figures, 26,800 watchmakers will be needed to handle the workload.

Sources: American Watchmakers-Clockmakers Institute ( and, in late fall, WOSTEP.




Copyright © 1998 by Bond Communications.


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