The MELB Holding is an independent holding company with a family structure based in the heart of the Vallée de Joux, which is characterized by its proven watchmaking know-how and high industry expertise. It is led by former boss at Audemars Piguet, Georges-Henri Meylan. MELB Holding owns the haute horology brands, H. Moser & Cie. and Hautlence.
MELB was formed in 2012 to acquire the Hautlence and H. Moser & Cie. brands which were struggling at the time. Hautlence was first, and Meylan was able to acquire the company with support from Bill Muirhead who was formerly financial director for Breguet and became CEO of MELB Holding. The only Hautlence founder to remain was Guillaume Tetu.
Shortly after this, Meylan was approached by Thomas Straumann, who owned H. Moser & Cie. and Precision Engineering AG, a producer of escapement components including hairsprings. Meylan decided to purchase Straumann's Moser Watch Holding AG, which included the H. Moser & Cie. brand and Precision Engineering operation. H. Moser & Cie. was headed up by Edouard Meylan, Georges-Henri's son who had previously overseen the high-profile but unsuccessful Celsius mobile phone concept.
According to Georges-Henri Meylan, MELB Holding is organized like the Swiss Confederation Each company is an independent entity with general services like management and distribution shared. This includes MELB Asia, a distributor in Asia for the company's brands, along with De Bethune.
The MELB name is an acronym of founder Meylan's children “Meylan Edouard Léonore Bertrand”. According to Georges-Henri Meylan, “the idea is not to build something up and then sell it … it is to pass it on to the next generation.” MELB Holding is based in Le Brassus in the Vallée de Joux.
- Independents Beyond Niche, Pierre Maillard, Europa Star, 2015
- MELB Holding - An Interview with Georges-Henri Meylan, Paul O'Neil, WorldTempus, 2014