Talk of vintage watches and one name that springs to the mind immediately is Mido. Mido continues as a strong favorite among the watch collectors of the world today. Mido has been a name to reckon with throughout its history of over 80 years, with watches that are meant for watch connoisseurs and discerning users. It specializes in mid price range watches that offer something special and out of the ordinary. Mido prides itself with making timeless watches.
Mido’s history goes back almost 90 years to 1918, when the company was born. Mido was started on November 11, 1918 by George G. Schaeren in Biel, Switzerland. Mido is a Latin term that means measuring. Since its very inception, Mido has been in the forefront of technical innovation and timeless designs.
The next several decades that followed the birth of the company, saw Mido advancing both technologically and aesthetically. While path breaking innovations such as the first automatic watch, the first watch with unbreakable springs, the first center chronograph, the world’s most powerful winding mechanism, and the world’s smallest ladies’ watch hall marked the technological advances, Mido’s collaboration with luxury brands threw up unique and attractive designs like the Mido Bugatti.
In 1934, Mido introduced the Multifort model, the first watch in the market to have a self-winding movement. The introduction of this automatic watch for the first time in the market was a major milestone in the history of Mido. The watch was also shock resistant, anti magnetic and water resistant – all firsts at that time. Mido reached yet another milestone in the same year when it introduced watches with unbreakable springs. This was also the first time that any company had introduced such springs in the market.
Mido was the first to introduce center chronograph (a watch with all hands arranged in the center) in the year 1945. In 1954 the company introduced the world’s most powerful winding mechanism. In 1967 Mido was recognized as the maker of the world’s smallest ladies’ watch.
With so many firsts to its credit and a history of innovations, it was small wonder that Mido was in the forefront for a number of decades. Mido’s first automatic, anti-magnetic and water resistant watch remained in the forefront for over three decades right through to the sixties. Another model, the Mido Robot was a symbol of robustness in the fifties. So much so that a famous comic strip of the period was dedicated to the Mido Robot and its adventures.
Mido introduced its commander model in 1959. This was a single shell watch, the first of its kind and a novelty at the time. The single shell case revolutionized the industry, and improved the life span of watches significantly. Mido commander has survived to this day, and is among the most highly recognized watches with several individual models. Among the models featured under this range is an 18 karat gold model. The range also includes chronographs and COSC certified chronometers.
In 1970 Mido introduced the Aquadura Crown Sealing system, an innovation that earned a place for it as the king of waterproof watches. The Aquadura crown sealing system uses a natural cork that is treated and shaped to ensure the water resistant characteristics. This is used to seal the crown, which is the part that is most prone to, and affected by, water leakage.
In the nineties, the Mido World Timer was introduced. This was a functional watch that could show the local time at any part of the world. The user had to just bring the concerned city to the 12 o’clock position and press the crown to see the local time in that city.
Mido is today a part of the Swatch group, which is a vibrant organization with over 150 production centers all over the world. Most of the production centers are in Switzerland, with the rest spread over countries like France, Italy, Germany, Thailand, Malaysia and China. Swatch group also owns brands such as Omega, Longines, Rado, and many more.