It was in March 2022 that Swatch and Omega joined forces to launch the “Reach for the Planets” Swatch x Omega Bioceramic MoonSwatch collection, a resounding success that saw enthusiastic buyers queuing for hours. These timepieces drew inspiration from Omega’s renowned Speedmaster Professional but came with Swatch-like affordability, retailing for under $350 (depending on the region) and featuring bioceramic materials. This collaboration marked a significant triumph within the Swatch Group. Now, Swatch aims to replicate that achievement, this time partnering with its sibling brand, Blancpain.
The all-new Blancpain x Swatch collaboration pays homage to Blancpain, a Swiss brand renowned for its first diver’s watch, the Fifty Fathoms, created 70 years ago in 1953 and since regarded as an icon among dive watches. The new Bioceramic Scuba Fifty Fathoms collection draws inspiration from Swatch’s Scuba line and is an unlimited series bearing the hallmark features of Fifty Fathoms watches, including water resistance, legibility, mechanical movement, rotating bezel, and anti-magnetic properties.
This collection comprises five models, each named after one of the five oceans: Arctic, Pacific, Atlantic, Indian, and Antarctic. The Bioceramic Scuba Fifty Fathoms is water-resistant to 91 meters (300 feet) and houses the Swatch mechanical movement, SISTEM51, introduced by the brand in 2013. It was the first automated production of a mechanical movement, consisting of just 51 parts, featuring a Nivachron™ hairspring for anti-magnetic properties and offering an impressive 90-hour power reserve. By employing this mechanical movement, Swatch and Blancpain remain steadfast in their commitment to never produce quartz watches.
Each of the five new watches boasts a distinct colorway specially created for this launch. The case backs display illustrations, and the rotors feature digital prints of creatures found in all five oceans: the nudibranchs. Depending on the ocean-themed version, a different type of nudibranch is highlighted. These timepieces are crafted from Swatch’s patented Bioceramic material, composed of two-thirds ceramic and one-third of another undisclosed material derived from castor oil.
To emphasize their dedication to ocean preservation, these watches are paired with NATO straps made from recycled fishing nets collected from the sea. Engravings of Swatch adorn the case side, while “Blancpain x Swatch” is prominently featured on the dial and crown. Additionally, certain models include references such as “No Radiations” below the logo, reminiscent of the 1960s when Blancpain ensured that their watches were free of radium. The Antarctic model also includes a genuine water contact indicator at 6:00 on the dial, a feature the brand implemented in some of its watches as early as 1954. These 42.3mm timepieces are available for $400 each.
So, do we love it like the Omega MoonSwatch? Or do we hate it because it just doesn’t swim in the same league? We love the idea of a $400 collaboration watch, but not so much the partnership with the luxury brand of Blancpain. Omega seemed a better fit. But, just as the Swatch x Omega MoonSwatch took the watch world by surprise, the Swatch X Blancpain Fifty Fathoms watch is a surprising reality. What lies ahead for the Swatch Group and its array of brands? Perhaps a Swatch X Breguet Tourbillon or, more reasonable, a Swatch X Longines Conquest? The possibilities are intriguing.