Introducing DuBois et fils – Our Latest Partner
I’ve never really been interesting in investing. For one, I’m a poor, struggling journalist with less disposable currency than a soup kitchen; for another, I like to know where my money’s going. A little number going up in a crypto wallet is as far removed from me as my appendix and even less understandable.
There’s kickstarter of course, but that’s not really a way of making money as much as it is supporting a company you believe in. Even then there are arguably more nightmares than success stories (or perhaps the failures are just more schadenfreude fun?). Dubois et fils, however, seems to be aiming for an imagined sweet spot in-between investment and support.
Ever wanted to own a watch company? This might be your chance, provided you don’t mind sharing with 999 other shareholders. Soon Dubois et fils will be welcoming the 1,000th member of their group of owners, offering genuine shares in the company in exchange for what looks to be a very reasonable amount of capital.
The thing is, who cares? Who is Dubois et fils and why would you want to own a piece of them? First and most importantly, because they are the oldest watch manufacture in Switzerland. That’s right, forget the various brand claims (looking at you Vacheron), DuBois et fils has been constructing timepieces since 1785.
If you’re wondering then why you’ve not heard of them before… well, it shouldn’t really be that much of a surprise. The past 50 years has all been marketing over manufactures and, even if you’re fantastic at the latter, without the former you’re stuck in the dark. Fortunately, since collector Thomas Steinemann bought the company in 2010 he’s been slowly but surely bringing DuBois et fils into the light.
In 2013 they introduced their first new watch collection, the DBF and have continued to produce handfuls of watches since, each limited to no more than 99 pieces. The designs have generally been nice, simple and well-made, coasting just under the radar. Get your investments ready however because that may be about to change.
If stories of old Swiss cellars stuffed with vintage movements are fairy tales then DuBois et fils has put the Brothers Grimm to shame with their discovery of over 230,000 of the things. It’s one hell of a discovery for any watchmaker – I know a couple of Brits that would sell a kidney for the haul – but especially for one with investors.
Imagine those movements like the gold reserve in Fort Knox. Every analogous dollar – your shares – represents a portion of that reserve. Essentially, you don’t just own a piece of DuBois et fils, you own your share of 230,000 movements and whatever gets done with them.
Among that store are examples of the first Automatic movement with a bi-directional rewinding rotor ever built, making it no surprise that DuBois et fils first piece in this new Fort Knox era will pay homage to it. I’ve yet to see the designs myself, but this isn’t the kind of thing you rush and I’m excited to see what happens. Not investor excited, but then I’m a cynical, untrusting bastard. I blame my upbringing.
Either way, if you’ve ever wanted to dip your toe into the wide open waters of watchmaking, Dubois et fils is a great opportunity to get the foot that toe is attached to through the door. Not only are their regular shareholder updates scarily transparent, but you get a nice discount on a DuBois et fils watch besides. If you’re the kind of person that tells their friends that your watch collection is an investment well… here’s a chance to put your money where your mouth is.