Breitling was created by Léon Breitling in 1884. Léon Breitling opened his first shop in 1884 and his aim was to provide clients with amazing accurate timepieces constructed by him. Leon was able to create superb chronograph watches that amazed clients and allowed him to move to Montbrilllant Street in La Chaux de Fonds area around the end of the 19th century.
The death of an owner can be difficult for any company, especially a watch company such as Breitling. Following Leon death, his son, Gaston, took over the company and pushed forward building on the companies success with chronograph watches which was adopted by public sector in the aviation industry and the with the police.
Breitling was able to win a contract with the Royal aviation industry which allowed them to receive excellent publicity.
It was a good linkage between aviation industry and Breitling as it put Breitling on top of the watch industry as many clients saw pilots and astronauts wearing Breitling watches. That association helped strengthen the brand image
In 1978, Ernest Schneider bought the company and focused his attention on developing more quartz watches and unveiling new models such as the emergency watch, Airwolf, and B1. Schneider knew that the audience wanted a solid watch that pilots or other adventure seekers would love to wear and enjoy in the most demanding conditions.
Some of the models developed during Schneider era are: Breitling Emergency, Superocean, Transocean, Chronospace, Aerospace, B1, and Colt.
Over the years associating Breitling with aviation proved to be a great success. The brand link to aviation helped create a wonderful following of collectors and watch enthusiasts. Breitling has also linked with the Bentley brand to create Breitling Bentley series which has enjoyed great success as well.