As IWC celebrates its 150th anniversary, the brand has inaugurated its all-new production facility, a milestone in its longstanding industrial tradition. Optimal working conditions, cutting-edge technologies and aerial design in order to optimize production and, in the end, the quality of IWC watches.
This important step for the brand provides a modern, flexible and highly efficient setting to operate some of the production activities. The brand’s strong expansion necessitated a move and it is also a clear signal on how IWC envisages its development plans. Currently, 230 employees work there but the capacity is of 400 staff.
Located on the outskirts of Schaffhausen, the new “Manufakturzentrum” brings together the production of cases, movement parts and movements’ assembly under one high-tech roof. Complications, casing up and final testing are still performed in the brand’s historic building/headquarters next to the river Rhine.
Chris Grainger-Herr, CEO of IWC, was an architect before he moved to IWC, in the marketing department.
The new facilities are more than just utilitarian. Chris Grainger-Herr, CEO of IWC, himself an architect, was personally involved in their design and states that: “The building obviously needed to offer optimal conditions for production and excellent working conditions for our employees. It was also very important to us to provide visitors with a unique experience. But we didn’t just want to build a functional factory – we wanted a building that was not only aesthetically pleasing but also perfectly encapsulated the spirit of our brand.”
The monumental Manufakturzentrum is 130m long, 62m wide and it has a gross floor area of 13,500 square metres. The glass façade is 2,500 square metres and provides natural light for optimal conditions for production. The first floor is dedicated to the production of movement parts (machining, decoration, electro-plating, jewelling) and movements.
Movements are assembled in an impressive 1,200m2 clean-room area. The production of cases is performed in the basement and is evident of the sharp expertise of IWC in the field, with state-of-the-art CNC machines and numerous craftsmen performing polishing operations.
The construction was completed within 21 months and involved 80 companies. More information at www.iwc.com.
IWC ManufakturZentrum Facts:
- Building: 130m x 62m
- Gross floor area: 13,500 square metres
- Volume: 69,200 cubic metres
- Workstations: 238 currently, capacity for 400
- Departments: Incoming Goods, Logistics, Movement-Component Production, Movement Assembly, Case Production, Case Assembly, Quality Control, Equipment Engineering, IT, Security, Infrastructure
- Solar panels: 2,200 square metres – 275,000 kilowatt-hours per year
- Design: ATP architects Zurich, RMA Reichardt – Maas – Assoziierte Architekten Essen
This post first appeared on Monochrome Watches - An online magazine dedicated to fine watches.