January 22, 2017

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America Runs on Bulova Time

Before him, wrist watches were “for ladies only.” Learn how an innovative businessman used marketing to change the world’s habits — and make millions for his company.

What they do:
Made the first men’s wristwatch.

There was a time when men carried pocket watches, and women wore bracelet watches. That prejudice was weakened during World War I, when armies gave men “wrist watches” to take into battle. A year later, in 1919, watchmaker Joseph Bulova introduced the first line of consumer wristwatches for men.

About the business:
Bulova was an innovative entrepreneur who made high quality clocks that sold in unprecedented numbers. But his wristwatches for men initially bombed. That is, until Charles Lindberg strapped on a Bulova. Lindberg wanted his plane as light as possible when he took his 1927 flight to Paris. He didn’t even want a clock in his cockpit – instead, he wore a Bulova wristwatch. When Lindberg wore it, Bulova told the world about it, and sales for Bulova’s Lone Eagle watch soared to incredible heights. Today Bulova remains a manufacturer of high quality time pieces.

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