Driven by his entrepreneurial and adventurous spirit, Joseph Bulova immigrated to American in 1870. There, at the age of just 19, he opened his own jewellery store in Lower Manhattan which at that time was the epicentre of the New York jewellery industry. The store was named J Bulova and he quickly became renowned for the quality and artistry of his work.
Demand for Joseph Bulova’s product began to increase steadily and, in 1912, he established his first factory committed to the production of jewelled wristwatch movements in Bienne, Switzerland. Pioneering the process of manufacturing fine watches via assembly line, he achieved something never before seen in the world of horology.
Always keen to champion new ideas, Bulova debuted its first complete range of men’s wristwatches in 1919 which it advertised in print across America. In 1926 they made American history by broadcasting the first ever national radio commercial and, on July 1st 1941, they aired the world’s first ever television commercial using the slogan “America runs on Bulova time”.
Always dedicated to accuracy and precision, in 1920 the Bulova Observatory was constructed in Midtown Manhattan. The first facility of its kind, the observatory was located at the top of a skyscraper and was intended to ensure accurate measurement of astral time. Readings were taken by mathematicians and delivered to setting and timing units which utilised the data to accurately set all of the company’s timepieces.
Bulova’s passion for accuracy continued when, in 1958, their Accutron technology was used aboard NASA’s Vanguard I satellite. This was the start of a decades long partnership during which Bulova produced timing instruments for critical NASA missions, including the first moonwalk on July 21st 1969. Continuously setting new standards in precision timekeeping, the Accutron technology achieved legendary status when, in 1967, it was used aboard Air Force One. Accutron timepieces were so well regarded that they were given as official Presidential Gifts of State and were the first wristwatches precise enough to be endorsed for general use by railroad workers.
Now celebrating 140 years of American innovation, Bulova continues to inspire and push the boundaries of technology. With the release of their Bulova Precisionist, they have addressed two further factors of accuracy in a quartz watch: temperature change and vibration frequency, succeeding in producing timepieces that are accurate to a remarkable 10 seconds per year. With this in mind, Bulova have recently announced a partnership with Barclays English Premier League football club Manchester United, and are currently serving as the team’s Official Timekeeper and global partner.Shop Bulova