The watch world is in mourning following news that former Rolex CEO Patrick Heiniger has passed away. Heiniger, who was born in Argentina in 1950, was just the third Chief Executive Officer in the history of Rolex SA, and was one of the most well-respected figures in the industry.
Heiniger, 62, joined the company as a Commercial Director before going on to become Managing Director, and, finally CEO. It was a family affair for Heiniger, who followed in the footsteps of his father André J. Heiniger, who himself succeeded company founder Hans Wilsdorf as CEO.
Heiniger, who trained as an intellectual property lawyer, is credited as the force behind Rolex’s tremendous growth in market share and production during the last quarter century. As a result, Rolex SA is one of the few major manufactures still operating as a private trust not traded on any stock exchange, allowing the company greater freedom.
During his sixteen year tenure with the Swiss company, Heiniger created the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative, which pairs rising artists with great masters for a year of learning and collaboration.
Haute Time wishes to express our condolences to Heiniger’s loved ones, and to the entire Rolex SA family.
Source and photo courtesy WorldTempus.