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The Globe and Mail

Longines' timeless designs weather recession

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Longines’ famous winged hourglass logo is the oldest registered trademark in the watch industry.

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Walter Von Kaenel, president of Swiss watch maker Longines, visits the newly reopened Longines museum at the company headquarters in Saint-Imier Sept. 27, 2012.

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A Longines employee assembles wrist watches at the company headquarters in Saint-Imier Sept. 27, 2012.

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Although the luxury industry has been affected by an economic slowdown in China, Longines watches are still selling well there, the company’s CEO Walter von Kaenel told The Financial Times.

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Clock hands are pictured before assembly in Saint-Imier. The luxury watch maker is celebrating its 180th anniversary this year.

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Mr. Von Kaenel said that Chinese customers appreciate the longevity of the company’s classic designs. ‘They don’t like changing their models.’

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A customer examines watches at a Swatch store in Zurich. Swatch Group, the world’s largest watchmaker, also owns higher-end brands such as Breguet, Blancpain, Omega – and Longines.

ARND WIEGMANN/REUTERS

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A saleswoman shows off brands belonging to Swiss Swatch Group, from left, Breguet, Longines, Omega and Glashuette in Zurich in this file photo.

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Mr. Von Kaenel visits the newly reopened Longines museum in Saint-Imier Sept. 27, 2012. A Longines watch designed in 1931 to commemorate Charles Lindbergh’s trans-Atlantic flight is still being sold today.

VALENTIN FLAURAUD/REUTERS

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