Audemars Piguet has been around since 1875. However, sitting in the office of François-Henry Bennahmias, the French CEO of the brand, you would be forgiven for thinking you were in Manhattan or Silicon Valley, rather than the Vallée du Joux. Surrounded by signed boxing gloves and pictures with Heads of State and celebrities, this is where Bennahmias has been directing the company for the last eight years, with his distinctive charisma and presence.
Formerly a professional golf player who then transitioned into the luxury space, he has been with Audemars Piguet for close to three decades, representing the brand from the United States to Singapore and Brunei. Since taking the helm of the company, he has presided over impressive growth in the brand’s global recognition, as well as a growing understanding and respect for its heritage. He has always done this under the guiding words of Yoda, the Star Wars character, of which he has a figurine in the office, “Do or do not. There is no try.”
We got the opportunity to spend the day at the Audemars Piguet manufacture in Le Brassus, sitting down with Bennahmias, who shared his thoughts on the past, present and future of the business. Whilst there, we visited the new Museum, as well as the archive department, handling some of the special pieces from the brand’s 145 year history. Certainly worth the two weeks of quarantine upon return, it was a trip to remember.