In July of 2017, Georges Kern left his position as head of digital and watchmaking at Richemont and, in a move which was surprising to the timekeeping world, accepted the role of CEO at Breitling. For many years, Breitling has faced criticism for their oversized watches with shiny cases and their too detailed dials stuffed full of complications. This feedback impacted Kern and his desire for a “new” direction for the brand, which is the fourth largest in the US by sales.
As Georges Kern begins the work of reinventing a major brand in the global watchmaking game, he plans to take his inspiration from the history of the company and the archives of design at Breitling. The result can be seen in the first release of a new chronograph under Kern’s helm. The Breitling Navitimer 8 B01 was introduced in February at the Breitling Road Show in New York City (check out out exclusive photos here). The “new” Breitling is a mix of historic simplicity and modern size aesthetic, for now at least, as Kern has promised a more “traditional” appearance of future pieces in the line.