Mr. Willy Lebet launches its own watch company. La Chaux-De-Fonds is the cradle of the Swiss watch industry and saw, like his own neighbor Le Locle, several watchmaking companies flourish in the 19th and 20th century. La Chaux-De-Fonds is the highest city in Europe and has a long winter and until recently, its population mainly lived in the watch industry. In the early 50s, Lebet moved his company to Neuville, a small village just 25 kilometers from La Chaux-De-Fonds. Soon it records the Catena brand and in 1959 his son Claude resume command of the company.
At that time, the company specializes in the assembly of mechanical movements standby growing rapidly. In 1964 the company moved to Bulle, to find a workforce more important and necessary. Bulle is the main town of Gruyere, famous for its cheese and chocolate, and Catena ranks 3rd among the most famous Swiss products, cheese, chocolate and watches. At that time, mechanical watches still prevail and few manufacturers dare to think outside the box, producing a particularly original shows, CATENA.
This dissent Catena plans in light asserting itself through design and exceptional lines quite specific. Thus was born including the famous “Spaceman” inspired by the flying saucers, great conversation then. This is a great success and in most world markets. And even found the “Spaceman” (1972-1978) to the “Museum of Modern Art” in New York. This success encouraged the team of Catena and the dynamic owner, Mr. Lebet, to engage even further in the production of watches and consider a real brand strategy.
Since then, a lot of snow fell on the Moléson, beautiful mountain overlooking the factory. The Catena collection expands with quartz watches which then replace most mechanical models.