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Sandoz was a brand of watches produced throughout the 20th century.


The Sandoz family dates back to the 16th century in Le Locle, when Johannus Sandoz was born there in 1530. Henry Sandoz, son of Jules E. Sandoz (1842-1912) established himself there as a skilled watchmaker in 1895, specializing in ultra-thin watches, repeaters, and chronographs.

The Odin Watch Factory was established in 1870 by the Lassueur family of Bienne. Henry Sandoz took over the Odin factory around the turn of the century. In 1914, Sandoz began producing wristwatches.


The firm moved to Peseux in 1919. In 1920, Hermann Sandoz joined his father, renaming the firm Henry Sandoz & Fils. The company later marked its start as 1870.

Sandoz sold the original facility to Charles Berner in 1923, who transformed it into the Fabrique d'Ebauches de Peseux which also specialized in compact and shaped movements. Many decades later, the Peseux factory would supply ultra-thin movements to Sandoz.

La Chaux-de-Fonds

Henry Sandoz and his son constructed a larger factory in La Chaux-de-Fonds in 1926. At this point, in addition to the Sandoz and Odin brands, the company produced watches as Crusader and Henry Sandoz & Fils. The company was recognized with two first prizes at the Neuchâtel Observatory in 1938.

Sandoz introduced a range of thin waterproof watches in 1951 and this would be their signature through the 1950s. In 1954 the firm introduced a waterproof watch just 7 mm thin, thanks to their new Calibre HSF 55. It was designed to be the thinnest movement with center seconds. The company introduced a new screwless ring balance made of beryllium alloy and SandoFix regulator in 1956.

In 1958, André Bezzola became a partner in the company. He had been production manager since 1952. The company opened another new factory in Moudon in 1960. In 1961, on the retirement of Hermann Sandoz, Eric Kocher took over management. This enabled the firm to expand their operations in both locations. The company marketed itself as Sandoz of Switzerland from the 1950s.

Sandoz specialized in ultra-thin watches in the 1950s and 1960s. Cal. HSF 55 was the thinnest in the world in 1955, as was the similar Cal. HSF 56. Cal. 333, introduced in 1959, was the thinnest automatic movement, with six ball bearings for the peripheral automatic rotor. It was available with 17, 25, or even 50 or 60 jewels. Many Sandoz watches in the 1960s used thin movements produced by Fabrique d'Ebauches de Peseux, which was ironically located in the original Sandoz factory in that village.

By 1970, Sandoz was part of Société Des Garde-Temps SA along with Elgin, Fleurier Watch, Invicta, and Waltham. The company sold LCD digital watches under the SGT brand in the 1970s.

Other Sandoz References