What's behind Rolex name and logo
Why is Rolex called Rolex?
In the watch industry, it usually takes one or two names (the founders, for example) or a town's name (Glashütte Original) to make a brand's name. This is the case with Jaeger-LeCoultre, Panerai or some modern brands such as Bell & Ross. Have you ever wondered what's behind the origin of the name Rolex and its five-pointed crowned logo? Let's try and find out.
Considering that we're talking about name and logo behind the world's most powerful watch brand, according to an Interbrand's report released in 2016, curiosity is natural because its origins help explaining why is Rolex so appealing and why is such a longstanding brand strategy, that dates back to the first half of the 20th century, so successful.
There are actually two theories: the first one is quite romantic and tells that Hans Wilsdorf, the brand's founder, was whispered by someone else the name Rolex while he was traveling on a bus in London, the city he had moved to (he was born in Germany) before going to Geneva.
The second one, that seems to be more credible, tells that ROLEX is actually a merger of the words "horlogere" and "exquisite" that sounds in English like "hoROLogical EXcellence", although it seems they have not always been perfect, according to what Watchfinder found out: a one-of-a-kind Rolex Air-King. Hans Wilsdorf also affirmed that he liked this name because it was short, smart, easy to pronounce in any language and looked symmetrical. He also decided it had to be written in capital letters. At this point it is no coincidence that even the collections born in over a century of history bear a name that follows exactly the same logic: Oyster, Gmt-Master II, Air-King, Daytona.
Last but not least, the colors chosen for the brand's were gold and green, which represent wealth and prosperity respectively, while the five-pointed crown represents the "aiming at new conquests" as highlighted in an early 1900's slogan.
(Photo credit: Horbiter®'s proprietary photo-shooting, courtesy of Rolex)
Gaetano C @Horbiter®