Interview with Tom van Wijlick, Co-Founder of Lebois & Co Watches

Alligator strap and Moleskine notebook Lebois and Co - Gracious Watch
Alligator strap and Moleskine notebook Lebois and Co - Gracious Watch

Alligator strap and Moleskine notebook Lebois and Co - Gracious Watch
Alligator strap and Moleskine notebook Lebois and Co – Gracious Watch

  1. Please tell us more about yourself Tom

Being a watch aficionado for years I started a company in selling new and used Swiss timepieces. At first it was only a convenient way to finance my hobby but over time I got more and more infected with the “watch virus”. Together with my cousin I started a company that creates and runs online boutiques for independent Swiss watch manufacturers. Worked with several watch manufacturers I suddenly knew: I want to start my own watch brand.

1950s Lebois and Co Date - Gracious Watch
1950s Lebois and Co Date – Gracious Watch

  1. Tell us more about the history of Lebois & Co watches.

The original Lebois & Co was founded in 1934 by French watchmaker Raymond Dodane. Raymond belonged to the third generation of the Dodane watchmaking family which was founded in La Rasse in the Doubs in 1857. After WWII the company was sold to an Italian import company. The watches were still being produced in the Dodane factory and by some Swiss manufacturers, and sold (mainly to Italy). Then in 1972 Lebois & Co ceased production and the brand disappeared.

Lebois and Co Avantgarde Date 1st Re-launch Edition 112.412
Lebois and Co Avantgarde Date 1st Re-launch Edition 112.412

  1. Why do you wish to resurrect Lebois & Co after so long? 80 years to be exact

A year ago my partner Eveline and I came across a picture of a beautiful vintage watch. It was a Lebois & Co Chronograph which was sold at an auction by Christie’s. I never heard of the brand and wondered if the brand still existed. Struck by the beauty of this watch and mystery of this unknown brand I printed the picture and stuck it to our American fridge. Several days later we started our investigation of this forgotten brand. One thing led to another and here we are; Lebois & Co is back and here to stay!

Lebois and Co Watches - Interivew on Gracious Watch

  1. What is your goal and vision for Lebois & Co right now?

Having sold many watches I found that the coolest thing is to see how happy people get with their new purchase. This makes a watch a beautiful product to sell. You will carry it around everywhere. Some people never take off their watch, not even when they are sleeping. If you take good care of it, it will last a lifetime or even longer.

Our mission is to create these beautiful watches that make people smile. Our goal now is to make a succes of our 3 Avantgarde Date Re-launch Editions. After that there will be a normal version of the Avantgarde Date. Our vision is to create a wide range of luxury swiss timepieces.

Moleskine notebook - Lebois and Co

  1. Where is the watches available and how can our readers order one?

For now the 1st Re-launch Edition is only available through Kickstarter. Those interested can get one of the 100 pieces that are made at a very special price.

Lebois & Co Avantgarde Date, Technical Specifications – Reference number 112.412  

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  • 40 mm Height: 10,5 mm Sapphire crystal Case-back, screwed down, special “Re-launch” engraving Water-resistant to 100 m / 10ATM
  • Movement Swiss ETA 2824-2 Automatic Frequency: 28,800 vibrations/hour (4 Hz) Jewels: twenty-five (25) Power reserve: 38 hours
  • Functions Hours, minutes, seconds, date
  • Dial White dial Applied indexes Silver hour and minute hands with luminescent material Red seconds Roman numerals for the minute track
  • Strap Genuine Louisiana Alligator

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