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New office Swatch inaugurates wooden headquarters

Swatch's wooden headquarters building in Biel

Swatch's wooden headquarters building, originating from Swiss forests, is 240 metres long and 35 metres wide.

(Keystone / Peter Klaunzer)

Swatch has inaugurated its headquarters at Biel in northwestern Switzerland. The wooden building, one of the world’s largest timber structures, was designed by Japanese architect Shigeru Ban. 

“We have invested CHF220 million ($220 million) in these offices, including CHF125 million for the Swatch brand alone,” said CEO Nick Hayek on Thursday. 

The new office was designed by Tokyo architect Shigeru Ban, winner of the 2014 Pritzker Prize, and took five years to build. 

The curved wooden honeycomb structure, originating from Swiss forests, is 240 metres long and 35 metres wide. Inside, there is 25,000 square metres of office space spread over five floors for all departments of Swatch International and Swatch Switzerland. 

View inside new Swatch Group headquarters in Biel

View inside new Swatch Group headquarters in Biel.

(Keystone / Peter Klaunzer)

The new headquarters is located next to the factory of Swatch Group subsidiary Omega, also designed by Ban, and houses museums dedicated to the Swatch and Omega brands. 

“This is a tribute to our father,” said Nayla Hayek, chair of the Swatch Group board of directors. Nicolas Hayek, who launched the Swatch empire, died in 2010.

Swatch/Keystone-SDA/sb

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SWI swissinfo.ch on Instagram

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