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Union pour des Montres Ancre Économiques (UMES) was a federation of Swiss watch manufacturers active in the 1960s and 1970s.
UMES was founded in 1966 in Neuchâtel with 7 companies as members. This was the same year as the establishment of similar groups, SAGITER and SOPROD. Unlike SATIGER (which was for “leading companies”) and SOPROD (which was for smaller manufacturers), UMES was aimed at factories producing watches on a very large scale for mass market consumption. These products would be deeply impacted by the financial and quartz crisis of the 1970s.
Member companies continued exhibiting together at the Basel Fair from 1970 through 1983. In the 1980s, UMES was active in the Swiss Mechanical Watch Study and Promotion Group but was unable to adapt as mechanical watches resurged later in the decade. Most UMES members were forced to adapt to the changing market with some ceasing operations and others changing focus. For example, Sellita focused on movement production and is now a leading producer rivaling ETA in volume, while Mondaine became a consumer brand for clocks and watches.
- Claro Watch SA, Bienne (founded 1961)
- Catena Watch SA, Bulle (founded 1908, spun out by 1978)