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Patek Philippe & Co.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Patek Philippe & Co. is one of the most famous and expensive brands of wrist watches in the world. Patek Philippe is currently owned by the Stern family. Many watch collectors regard Patek Philippe timepieces as the best in the world. Over the years, Patek Philippe watches have been worn by a number of notable individuals, including members of royalty, movie stars and tycoons. Albert Einstein was also a customer.

Antoni Patek started making pocket watches in 1839 in Geneva, along with his fellow Polish migrant Franciszek Czapek. They separated in 1844, and in 1845 Patek joined with the French watchmaker Adrien Philippe, inventor of the keyless winding mechanism. In 1851, Patek Philippe & Co was founded.

In 1868, Patek Philippe made their first wristwatch. They have also pioneered the perpetual calendar, split-seconds hand, chronograph and minute repeater in watches. The company has produced quartz watches in the past and even a digital wrist watch.

Patek is also the creator of the most complicated mechanical watch ever made, the Calibre 89, created for the 150th anniversary of the company in 1989. It holds 33 complications, including the date of Easter, a thermometer, time of sunrise, equation of time, sidereal time, and many other indicators. The Calibre89 is also able to add a day to February for leap years while leaving out the extra day for every 100 year interval.

Patek Philippe produces a number of collectible watches. In the 150 year history of the company, they have produced approximately 600,000 timepieces in total - less than the annual production of Rolex.

In 2005 the company introduced the revolutionary Silicium escapement wheel to the industry.