Cultural Council - R&D, production, technical expertise

Fine watchmaking requires a complete command of production, finishing and decoration. Every aspect of the watch's existence must be taken into consideration, from inception to completion.

Investment in R&D, particularly in new materials, is increasingly essential to maintain fine watchmaking at an exceptional level.


Emmanuel Schneider

Market Research Manager at the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie, coordinator for the Cultural Council

Holder of “Diplôme Supérieur de l’Ecole du Louvre” and also of a Master degree in Business Intelligence from l’ESLSCA in Paris, Emmanuel starts his professional career at Richemont France as a marketing analyst within the Marketing Intelligence Department. Then, he joined the FHH Geneva from its inception in 2005 where he was involved in several projects such as the launch of the HH Journal (2006), the initiation to watchmaking workshop (2009) or the creation of the HH Certification (2014). Passionate about watchmaking, he learned the technical bases with master-watchmakers and profits from numerous visits of manufacture and trade shows to perfect his knowledge about contemporary watchmaking. Currently Market Research and Content Manager, Emmanuel joins the FHH Academy team in 2014 and is responsible for the production of both face-to-face and digital training content. He is also involved in one-off monitoring and consulting missions for brands.

Experts // Europe

Henri-John Belmont

Fine Watch consultant and founder of Belmont Conseil, Switzerland

A consultant in fine watchmaking, Henri-John Belmont is a qualified engineer and holds an MBA from INSEAD. He became chief executive of Jaeger-LeCoultre in 1987. Appointed to the board of Richemont in 2001, he oversaw the integration of Jaeger-LeCoultre, IWC and A. Lange & Söhne within the Group's other specialist watch brands. He developed Richemont's overall watch movement manufacturing strategy before creating Belmont Conseil in 2006.

Elizabeth Doerr

Freelance journalist and author, Germany

Elizabeth Doerr fell under the spell of watchmaking on her very first visit to Baselworld in 1991. Her articles are read by millions of people every year and appear in newspapers and magazines as well as online, foremost on her own digital magazine QuillAndPad.com. Elizabeth Doerr published '12 Faces of Time,' her first book, in 2010, which has been described as a "love letter" to independent watchmakers.

Manuel Emch


Manuel Emch, creative thinker, trained in design at the ArtCenter, HEC business graduate. As CEO and Artistic Director, he created the powerful identity, developed iconic products and internationally grew Jaquet Droz then RJ-Romain Jerome, two haute horlogerie brands. He was a member of the Swatch Group management board with responsibilities that included East European countries, starting up the Russian subsidiary, and managing Swatch alongside N. G. Hayek, his mentor. He is a consultant and board member for watch, luxury and tech firms. He helped set up the first watch design course at Geneva School of Design-HEAD and sits on the school's academic board.

Gianfranco Ritschel

Trainer and consultant in watchmaking, Switzerland

After a successful career as a watchmaker with several major brands, including Rolex, Gianfranco Ritschel turned his attention to a different aspect of watches: marketing. Between 1992 and 1994, he served as marketing and sales manager at Piaget Switzerland. He then moved to Bucherer as branch director, becoming a member of the management team and, at the same time, director for watches at Bucherer Group. From 2004 to 2008, Gianfranco developed the Swiss branch of Girard-Perregaux and JeanRichard. Since 2009 he has been active as a trainer and consultant.

Jean-Marc Wiederrecht

Agenhor Founder

A graduate of the Geneva Watchmaking School, Jean-Marc Wiederrecht founded the Agenhor SA horological development company together with his wife. In the course of his 40-year career to date, he has created the watch mechanisms of many landmark watches – some of them distinguished by prestigious prizes – such as Harry Winston’s Opus 9, the poetic complications models from Van Cleef & Arpels as well as the Slim d’Hermès Perpetual Calendar. His most recent creation is the AgenGraphe®, a revolutionary central-hand chronograph.

Experts // Americas

Jack Forster

Biography coming soon...