es Fils d’Arnold Linder SA, a self-styled “Meticulous Dials Manufacture”, is a perfect example of the transformation taking place in the watchmaking supply sector.
The two founders of the company in 1946, Albert and René Linder, were initiated into the manufacture of artisanal dials by their father, a paysan horloger – a farmer in summer, a watchmaker in the winter. In 1957 they expanded the business and built up a reputation for excellence in their field.
- Jean-Paul Boillat, managing director of dial-maker Les Fils d’Arnold Linder SA
One of their longstanding principal customers was Piaget. At its instigation, Jean-Paul Boillat bought the company in 1984, modernised it, expanded it and relocated it from Le Locle to Les Bois. In 2000, he was approached by Franck Muller who, with Vartan Sirmakes, personally acquired one-third each of the company. One-third he kept himself – a kind of shared vertical integration.
- Dial plans and blanks
Today, the company employs 110 people. It masters all the technology and arts of dial-making, from mechanics, stamping, creation of blanks, drilling, micro-milling, machining, electro-erosion, laser machining, surface treatments, electroplating and decals right through to R&D. The company handles fifteen new references a day, with up to 180 operations for one single dial.