Following the creation of the Watches and Wonders Geneva Foundation in February 2023, the Fondation Haute Horlogerie is refocusing on three of its historic areas of activity: Watches & Culture by FHH, the FHH Academy and the FHH Forum, to promote the watch as an object of art and culture.
By the same token, three new watch brands are joining the circle of official partners of the foundation. Since its creation in 2005, the FHH has had a defined mission: to contribute to the influence of watchmaking culture internationally and to designate the watch as an object of art and culture, albeit while maintaining a totally neutral standpoint. Today, the FHH is concentrating on its three strong pillars, with Pascal Ravessoud and Aurélie Streit leading with a fresh take from its headquarters on the Pont de la Machine. “The FHH is the undisputed reference for any subject related to watchmaking” says Pascal Ravessoud. “Our wish is to talk about watchmaking to a wider audience beyond the community of enthusiasts, and in particular by shifting the way people perceive it.” Today, education is combined with dialogue, while neutrality coexists with originality. Content informs as much as it entertains, at a time when amateurs, insiders, professionals and individuals all belong to the same community.
This strategic evolution is based on the Foundation’s three key areas of activity: Watches & Culture by FHH, the FHH Academy and the FHH Forum, as well as on their complementary target audiences. B2B or B2C, professionals, experts or amateurs, young or old, the FHH succeeds in reaching out to everyone. This vision is fully shared by Aurélie Streit who, with Watches & Culture by FHH, intends to bring watchmaking culture to life through the creation of original content, events, exhibitions and conferences aimed at amateurs and collectors alike, as well as renowned universities.
With a uniquely quirky, irreverent, stylish, chic and sometimes surprising tone of voice, the Instagram account @watches_and_culture aims to be the resolutely modern entry point for audiences who share in the codes of watchmaking while being somewhat unfamiliar with it. A brand new FHH digital platform will also soon be launched, which like the Instagram account that preceded it, will continue to take a different look at watchmaking.
The second pillar of the FHH, the FHH Academy, created in 2014, is for its part the only institution in the world that diagnoses, initiates, trains and certifies general watchmaking knowledge. And while it was originally designed for professionals in the sector, it is now aimed at all audiences, with 22 trainers present in 20 countries across 4 continents. In class, online or even via the app, for Aurélie Streit: “learning and knowledge sharing play an essential role in the sustainability of our industry and in our way of understanding tomorrow. It is necessary, now more than ever, to constantly adapt to the lifestyles and desires of our audiences”. Such issues also come up with the FHH Forum, the Foundation’s platform for discussion, information and debate.
As the third pillar of the FHH, designed for the industry by the industry, it shines a light on five main themes (sustainability, heritage, innovation, experience and industry) which the annual summit addresses to help shape the industry of tomorrow – both in person and online. “We bring together brands, groups and players in the sector with a desire to move forward, to create a positive impact, to provoke reflection by approaching subjects in an unconventional way. Providing solutions requires positioning oneself at the forefront,” insists Pascal Ravessoud.
The FHH, fueled by projects and ideas, benefits from the unfailing support of some forty partner brands, made up of some of the most storied Maisons in the watch industry, as well as a circle of independent creators. Partners who are well aware of the attractiveness of the FHH and whose numbers only continue to grow. As proof, the FHH was very recently joined by Baume et Mercier, Gerald Charles, and Oris, who together are proud to write a new page on the influence of watchmaking in the world.