Can’t Buy the Watch You Want? It’s Partly a Lack of Watchmakers.

With student enrollments down and retirements rising, Swiss brands worry that growth will stall.

The watchmaking world is facing an unprecedented problem: a severe lack of watchmakers who can build and repair timepieces as well as technicians, engineers and other skilled workers. That has contributed to such severe supply problems that they could stall growth, especially at top-end brands.

“There is a true shortage of manpower,” Aurélie Streit, vice president of the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie, said during a recent video interview from the organization’s Geneva headquarters. “Not only watchmakers, but also specialists in the 15 other watchmaking jobs, from precision mechanics to engineers, finishers, polishers, research and development, and

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