Robbery forces Blancpain exhibition to close

The trail of destruction left behind following the attempted robbery at the Blancpain X Fathoms exhibition in Geneva.

One arrested after X Fathoms smash and grab in Geneva.

A watch exhibition in Switzerland showing off the new Blancpain X Fathoms timepieces had to be shut down after a gang of thieves attempted to steal the watches.

A gang of four robbers made their way into the exhibition at Cité du Temps in Geneva and smashed up cases, stealing some of the X Fathoms watches, but the robbery was foiled by intercepted company SIC.

A spokesperson from Swatch, which owns the Blancpain brand, said that “most of the watches” were recovered and one of the four thieves was arrested. However, the damaged caused to the exhibition and timepieces forced the watch brand to close down earlier than planned.

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A statement from Blancpain said: “It seems like some people are ready to risk their life for our timepieces.”

The X Fathoms has a 9918B movement, based on the Calibre 1315 that is already used in Blancpain’s Fifty Fathoms collection, and is said to be one of the most high-performance mechanical divers watches ever created.

It is self winding, has three barrels that equate to a five-day power reserve and has a silicon balance spring to resist “magnetic disturbances”.

Its lightweight 55.6mm titanium case is water resistant to 30 bars, and it can achieve depth measures of 90m with “exceptional +/- 30cm precision and retrograde five-minute counter for decompression stops”.

The research and testing conducted by Blancpain has shown that titanium is the ideal material for the timepiece, as it allows the brand to reduce the thickness of the watch while avoiding microcracks in its surface.

The brand has also heavily researched the legibility of the watch when underwater. It has central depth indication hands with a matt black background colour to enhance the contrast and three-colour luminescence to distinguish indications useful underwater.

The X Fathoms also boasts “the most complex injected rubber strap ever conceived”, comprising of 14 articulated parts designed to be a perfect fit on the wrists.

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