Everything started in 1883 when Gottlieb Hauser, watchmaker in Winterthur, founded the Swiss Watchmakers Corporation ("Corporation d'Horlogers Suisse"). A number of watchmakers joined to purchase watch components and organized their manufacturing. Quickly, the new concept gained acceptance. Together with qualified manufactures, the Association started to develop its own calibres and to enlarge its distribution network. Ebauches (the base of a calibre) were produced by the Alpina Ebauche Factory in Geneva, owned by Duret & Colonnaz, which played also an important role in the construction of the first Alpina calibres. Final steps in the manufacture of the calibres were performed in Bienne, the place of the head quarters of the Association as of 1890. Success was swift and representations were set up in Germany as well as in Eastern and Northern Europe. In 1901, the name "Alpina" was registered as a trademark. At the same time it would only appear on the dials of high-end watches. From the beginning, Alpina watches were manufactured with high quality components, amongst others Brequet spirals, balance wheels with gold screws and heavy gold cases.
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