Bergeon & Cie
It seems every time I'm given a tour of a watch factory I spot
the name "Bergeon" stamped on various tools, machinery
and even the watchmaker's workbench. Hmm, I better visit this
Right smack in the middle of downtown Le Locle (population 11,000)
and a stone's throw away from the town's impressive turn-of-the-century
city hall building is where I find the five-story, company-owned
headquarters of Bergeon & Cie. Built in 1947, the exterior
of the building contains two glass displays filled with tools
used by watchmakers.
After checking in with the helpful and friendly receptionist
I'm soon meeting with Arnold Calmonte, Executive Sales Director.
No complaints here as the engaging Calmonte, who's been with
the company over 30 years, answers my questions and gives an
extensive tour of the place. The building is a lot bigger than
it looks from the front as it extends to the next street in the
rear. Besides being the head office it's also a warehouse and
distribution center. Bergeon supplies watchmakers and jewelers
around the world with the tools of their trade and has done so
since its founding in Le Locle way back in 1791. In fact, in
its 213-years of existence, Bergeon has always been located within
two blocks of its present site.
The lobby contains a large showroom displaying a vast array of
products offered in Bergeon's catalogs. About 60 people work
here. Management gets reserved parking, smoking isn't allowed
in the workplace, there's no formal dress code. Though there're
no onsite recreational facilities, exercise can be had by trekking
up and down the stairs as there's no elevator.
Nothing special about General Director Michel Soldini's no-frills,
third floor corner office. Company's website: www.bergeon.ch