Rado is a globally recognized well known brand among wrist watches, famous for its new innovative designs and its use of specific revolutionary materials to create some of the world’s most astonishing and last long durable wrist watches. Ever since its beginnings in Lengnau, Switzerland, Rado has been a pioneer in development of the wrist watches, with the brand philosophy “if we can imagine it, we can make it” still holding true till now.
Modest beginnings in Lengnau, Switzerland
The Schlup & Co. watchmaking factory was founded by the 3 brothers Fritz, Ernst and Werner in 1917. Their humble lodge, a converted part of their parents’ home, was the birthplace of the company that would later become Rado. Though Schlup & Co. got off to a modest start, by the end of World War II the factory was among the largest producers of watch movements at the global level.
1950 – 1959
The first Rado collection
At First, Schlup & Co. began to sell their watches under the Rado brand name in the 1950’s. The iconic and well-known Golden Horse collection of theirs made its debut in 1957, as the very same year that Schlup & Co. celebrated its 40th anniversary. The Green Horse collection followed in 1958 and introduced as one of the first Rado models of theirs marketed on its water resistance. By the end of the decade, Rado was a truly international brand with a presence in over 61 countries globally.
1960 – 1969
A star is born
In 1962, Rado continued to set itself apart with one of its most renowned models: the DiaStar 1. Marketed as “the world’s first scratch proof watch”, the DiaStar 1 was a response to customer demands for comfort, robustness and exclusive style. A prime example of Rado’s innovative approach to design and materials, this timepiece brought hardmetal and sapphire crystal into the watchmaking industry at a time when this was far from the norm.
1970 – 1989
From one innovation to the next
Rado design and material innovations continued apace into the 1970s and 80s. The first gold-coloured DiaStar debuted in 1972, and 1976 marked the introduction of the minimalistic Rado Dia 67, which featured innovative case construction entirely covered by an edge-to-edge metalized sapphire crystal glass. In 1986 the Rado Integral exploded onto the scene, revolutionizing the watch industry with its use of scratch-resistant high-tech ceramic in the bracelet.
1990 – 1999
The ceramic revolution
The 90’s saw the continued the use of high-tech ceramic, now one of Rado’s signature materials. The launch of the Rado Ceramica in 1990 introduced the world to a completely integrated watch case and bracelet made of sapphire crystal and high-tech ceramic materials. The Rado Sintra, launched in 1993, was the first Rado watch made of cermet, a titanium-based ceramic combined with metal. In 1998 the Ceramica was the first Rado watch chosen to feature pioneering plasma high-tech ceramic, a fascinating colour and material combination that exudes a metallic glow without the use of any metal at all.
2000 – 2009
A new millennium of design
Rado lead in the new millennium with the innovative eSenza, the first Rado watch designed without a crown. The revolutionary Rado V10K was unveiled in 2002; made of high-tech diamond, it is as hard (10,000 Vickers) and resilient as a real diamond. To end the decade in style, Rado honoured its design heritage with the release of the r5.5 collection, a minimalist masterpiece and the brainchild of renowned British designer Jasper Morrison.
2010 – TODAY
Our heritage of innovation continues
2011 saw the advent of Rado‘s ultra-slim ceramic masterpiece: the True Thinline, which measures in at an unbelievable 5 mm. In 2012 the sporty-chic Rado HyperChrome built on the True Thinline case technology, doing away with the previously required stainless steel “core” in favour of a sleek monobloc case. Rado broke a new ground in touch technology with the Esenza Touch (2013), a “crownless wonder” that can be set with a simple touch and swipe, and the HyperChrome Dual Timer (2014), a clever travel timepiece with a touch-controlled time zone swap function. In 2015 Rado unveiled chocolate brown high-tech ceramic, a stylish addition to Rado’s high-tech ceramic colour palette.
For nearly about three decades high-tech ceramic has played a central role in Rado’s approach to watchmaking. High-tech ceramic timepieces are objects of art and craftsmanship: Their smooth stylish surfaces can be metallic or matte, crafted in an ever-expanding array of colours.They are also a gentle approach to glamour: Lightweight and hypoallergenic, high-tech ceramic wrist watches are incredibly comfortable and can be worn by anyone with sensitive skin.
Sapphire crystal is used in all Rado wrist watches. Convex, facetted or flat, it underscores the dynamic profile of the timepiece and creates a seamless transition from the crystal to the bracelet and of case as well. Rado’s innovative use of metallisation on the surface of the crystal lends additional distinction.
In 1962, Rado introduced the well-known Rado DiaStar 1, a scratch-resistant wrist watch at a time when this was far from the norm. The secret behind this creation? Hardmetal. Still used by Rado today, hardmetal is an exceptionally robust material – more durable than steel, gold and platinum and capable of withstanding the stresses of everyday life.
Rado is not only the proud recipient of numerous prestigious international design awards: the brand also collaborates with the leading designers on the creation of new timepieces and runs worldwide Rado Star Prize competitions for up-and-coming young designers. Design is the cornerstone of Rado’s many groundbreaking timepieces, and it’s also in the brand’s DNA.
13 July 2020
The Swiss watchmaker Rado has always shown special attention to creating timepieces with impeccable designs that are highly visually appealing. Rado now joins the emblematic social media platform of all things visual by launching its Pinterest account. Pinterest, a platform with over 320 million active monthly users shows inspirational themed boards, created by mixing pins from Instagram posts and e-commerce catalogues.