Mühle-Glashütte GmbH, Nautische Instrumente & Feinmechanik is a German watch manufacturer.
Family enterprise in Glashütte with a rich tradition
In 1869 the company was founded by Robert Mühle under the name "Robert Mühle & Sohn". Main Focus was put on the production of precision devices and measuring instruments. In 1919 he joined his company with the corporate network "Vereinigte Glashütter Rechenmaschinenfabriken, Tachometer and Feinmechanische Werke" (United Glashütte computing machinery, tachometer and precision mechanics factories). In 1945 happened the expropriation and dismantling of the production facilities.
The second Mühle company, "Hans Mühle Glashütte", was founded a year after the expropriation by the grandson of Robert Mühle, Hans Mühle, and was specialized in running and inertia mechanisms and in various instruments.
In 1970 Hans-Jürgen Mühle took over the family business. In 1972 the nationalization followed, and in 1980 the acquisition of the company by the VEB Glashütter Uhrenbetriebe (VEB Glashütte watch companies). Since 1994 Hans-Jürgen Mühle once again is the sole owner of the company.
Turbulences and successful consolidation
""After a competitive legal dispute with the local watch manufacturer Nomos and failed settlement negotiations provisions for penalties had to be formed. Three out of eight previously produced ebauche movements of the company Mühle-Glashütte do not meet the requirements of the so-called Glashütte Rule. In these cases not the required 50 percent of the work at the movement were performed in the watch-making town. This is clear from a report (...). Thus, allegations of competitor Nomos Glashütte are confirmed, who had sued Mühle because of the failure of the Glashütte Rule and won the trial at the Munich District Court. After Mühle had declared the settlement negotiations in July 2007 as a failure, the company put back 63 million euros for a penalty, got debt-ridden and had to start the insolvency proceedings.
Meanwhile, the matter has found a happy ending. At 19 March 2008 a court confirmed the end the insolvency. At Baselworld 2008, the new models Germanika and Terranaut premiere. Mühle also announces the development of an own three-quarter plate and even of producing their own watch movement.
After his father Hans-Jürgen Mühle has withdrawn from as CEO in the fall of 2007, Thilo Mühle directs the company now as the sole manager. With this successful generation change, the family Mühle leads this traditional company already in its fifth generation.
The finest measuring technique for the wrist
Mühle-Glashütte is also considered one of the few specialists worldwide for highly complicated ship clock systems with up to 150 "smart" slave clocks. The master clock controls the time and date of all the clocks, providing time and world time. The slave clocks - with micro and opto-electronic detection of hands position - bring benefits at the installation and when crossing time zones and the associated time change. In addition, the ship's clock system offers interfaces to the engine room monitoring and to computer and telephone systems to support the full time management on board. The Mühle-Glashütte GmbH, with their marine chronometers and quartz watches as well as ship clock equipments, is one of the world's leading suppliers.
- Sächsische Zeitung 26 September 2007
- See the similar case Nomos-Uhr-Gesellschaft, Guido Müller & Co, Glashütte i/S. and the courts struggle at the beginning of Nomos Glashütte/SA