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Chris Benz

Brand

Die Chris Benz Story
Chris Benz Story
Chris Benz Watches
Chris Benz Watches
Chris Benz Features
Chris Benz Features
Chris Benz Shark Proof.
Chris Benz Shark Proof.

Chris Benz

The Story

  • HOW A PASSION TURNED INTO A SUCCESS STORY
  • curriculum vitae
  • Interview
  • Storyboard

HOW A PASSION TURNED INTO A SUCCESS STORY

The story of CHRIS BENZ Watches Intl. is the story of a young man´s passion for the sea and water sports. Already as a young boy, Chris Benz, great-grandson to the founder of the Württemberg Watch Factory, was a water sports enthusiast and diver, who often spent more time under the water than over it. He joined forces with friends and other divers, diving instructors, surfers, sailors, and other water-sports professionals who shared his passion for the fascinating world of water. To join CHRIS BENZ Ocean Team, water-sports enthusiasts and professionals around the world, men and women alike were and still are welcome to apply for sponsorship.

The experienced underwater and overwater sports aficionados and professionals of the CHRIS BENZ Ocean Team were not fully satisfied with any of the diving watches available on the market. Each watch had its own qualities, but there were always details that did not match up to their expectations. The CHRIS BENZ Ocean Team came to the conclusion that the perfect diving watch was not to be had for love or money but hand to be crafted. After lots of tests, shop-talk and consultation, they decided what constitutes a „proper“ diving watch. They remembered the well documented story of a certain Ferruccio Lamborghini, who, unhappy with his Ferrari, decided there and then to build a better sports car himself. What could be more natural than for the CHRIS BENZ Ocean Team to follow Lamborghini’s lead and develop the perfect diving watch themselves? As professionals they knew what other professionals needed and as an entrepreneur Chris knew how to translate their needs and requirements into an affordable product.

This marked the creation of the first models of the CHRIS BENZ Collection, and the response from divers and water-sports enthusiasts was both immediate and positive. Without expensive advertising campaigns, the CHRIS BENZ  brand, which now includes 13 basis models in over 131 versions, has become a genuine contender on the water-sports scene. After all, divers will only be convinced by a watch that has proven itself in practice.

The exclusive CHRIS BENZ Collection is noted for its uncompromising functionality and superior craftsmanship.

Solid marine stainless steel casings, precision mechanisms, reliable display instruments, helium escape valve as well as depthmeter technology and warranted water resistance up to 200 bar - all are standard features in our model range. In addition, the crystal used for our watches is made of ultra scratch-proof and almost indestructible sapphire crystal. With a hardness of 9, the sapphire crystal is surpassed only by diamond with a measure of 10 on the hardness scale from 1 to 10. Standard watch crystals have am average hardness of 6,5. An additional feature of our depthmeter is the integration of handy lunettes which allow for easy adjustment even when wearing neoprene gloves. The most notable feature is the use and integration of the solid marine stainless steel casings in all of our watch models as well as the extremely robust straps. These features are guaranteed to withstand even the bite of a Great White Shark.

To prove our motto “SHARK PROOF”, our watches were subjected to a real life bite test by a Great White Shark in the waters off of Gansbaai, South Africa in the world famous Shark Alley. Under the supervision of world-famous „Shark King“ André Hartmann our test was successfully executed in the wild.

Only CHRIS BENZ diving watches, as a result, are rightfully entitled to the SHARK PROOF label. The abundance of seals in Shark Alley, the preferred prey of sharks, means that not only are plenty of predators roaming these waters, but also divers, biologists and „shark tourists“, hoping to observe these fascinating creatures at close quarters.

The SHARK PROOF test was carried out under real conditions by experienced divers and shark experts. Inexperienced water sports enthusiasts are strongly advised not to try this test themselves when encountering sharks. It is definitely preferable to treat these elegant sea predators with the respect they deserve and admire them from a safe distance.

Christian Benzing || Founder & Head

Date of birth: 20.05.1967
Lives in: Stuttgart, Munich,
Capetown (Southafrica)
and Fuerteventura
Job: Head and founder
of the watch brand
CHRIS BENZ
Sporting Activities: Freediving (with and without white Sharks),
diverse regattas,
speedweeks Fuerte since 1986,
IFCA slalom-WC 2007
Favorite move: Up-side-down and Highspeed
Favorite dive areas: Great Barrier Reef, Australia

visionary, innovator, legend

Chris Benz, how did you actually come to design watches?

I grew up in Fuerteventura and South Africa and ever since my childhood I spent all my free time in the sea and on the water. I got my diver‘s certification at 15, and at 19, I was the youngest competitor when I took part in my first high-speed windsurfing world championship, where I established a new worldrecord in serial boards. I‘m an active big wave surfer, and I have also done apnoea diving for many years. At the beginning I formed the CHRIS BENZ Ocean Team with other world-class athletes-divers, surfers and windsurfers, sailors, etc. Initially, we were sourcing suitable watches for our own needs and later on, through selling diving watches, we were able to pass on our collective experience to like-minded individuals and other enthusiasts. We soon realized that a watch like the one we and other professionals wanted wasn‘t available on the market.

So eventually we decided to design our own watch based on our own requirements and ideas. Obviously it‘s also quite exciting to wear an exclusive brand which not everyone else has.

What exactly was wrong with the models offered by other competitors?

In practice, many so-called diving watches work as if they had been designed by non-swimmers, or at least non-sportsmen. They try to be fashionable, but have no clear, functional design. Many watches that look really impressive in the shop are virtually useless underwater. Others, which might be suitable otherwise, aren‘t rugged enough for professional diving use.

And so you decided to design a diving watch yourself?

We have sold tens of thousands of diving watches as a dealer before. This meant that we were able to analyze all the weak points of the other brands and exchange constant feedback with other users. We finally came to the conclusion that with a better, super-robust watch we would be able to create a real chance in the market. To meet market requirements, we had to develop a top quality watch that would be able to meet the most stringent demands - both in terms of technology and design.

What precisely is the difference between a real diving watch and a normal waterproof watch?

Accuracy is crucial and we prefer high-precision quartz mechanisms. We add practical and important extra functions, such as a depthmeter or an ascent alarm, which reacts when a diver surfaces too quickly without pressure compensation. To guarantee water-tightness, our minimum specification is 20 bar compression resistance. This pressure equates to a water depth of 200 meters, but can also occur simply when you jump into the water.

To gurantee a water-tightness of 20 bar, a watch needs a screw-down crown, which along with O rings seals the watch at the level of the adjustment mechanism. Watches that are waterproof to less than 200 meters are not real diving watches. However, our portfolio also includes models that are specified for water depths up to 500, 1000 or even 2000 meters.

A genuine diving watch has a single-sided turnable bezel (the upper casing ring), which is used to set the planned dive time. It can only be rotated in one direction, which means it cannot be turned the wrong way and thereby accidentally display a longer dive time, which would be dangerous when calculating decompression time and air supplies (e.g. in the case of cave divers). As watches are often subject to severe mechanical stress when diving, we use ultra scratch-proof sapphire crystal and marine stainless steel for the casing, otherwise collisions with rocks or wreckage, for example, might damage the watches. The luminous hands on the classic black face show up very clearly, which makes them easier to read even during night dives. Our analog and digital models also display dive depth and time.

A watch without a depthmeter function may be suitable as an entry level model or an add-on to a dive computer, but state of the art expectations of modern divers obviously requires the inclusion of the full range of electronic functions, such as water temperature display or maximum depth display, which is what our top models offer.

Are you personally involved in the design of each of your watches?

Obviously not on my own, but as a diver and water sportsman I know what is important and I set the parameters for a new model accordingly. We work with experienced international designers and manufacturers, who assist me as a team with the technical and optical implementation of the specifications. Lastly, I inspect and approve each model myself, after thorough personal tests. The members of the Ocean Team are also involved in development and testing, each contributing their own experience with potential new models. We work on the models together with the aim of continuously optimizing the watches.

What makes CHRIS BENZ diving watches different from the other ones?

The models of the CHRIS BENZ Collection ONE, DEEP, DEPTHMETER and SURF&SAIL represent the top tier in diving watches. Especially with regard to the ladies´ models, we rank as the international leaders, offering by far the largest selection worldwide, with over 48 versions. I must give a special mention to our fashionable watch face colours sea anemone pink and Caribbean blue with mother-of-pearls effect.

Classic, clear design, marine stainless steel, sapphire crystal, depthmeter, water temperature measurement, helium valve technology, ascent alarm, and up to 200 bar pressure resistance can hardly be found anywhere else in similar combinations. And the endurance test performed on CHRIS BENZ watches by real sharks is definitely unique!

Is that why you use your claim – CHRIS BENZ “SHARK PROOF”?

Exactly! Our watches are able to withstand the bite of the Great White Shark. We developed this SHARK PROOF test as an absolutely extreme criterion, not just to ensure a durable memento for someone who inherits a CHRIS BENZ watch.

We did carry out the bite tests under real conditions; they were not just an advertising gimmick, but actual proof of the quality and ruggedness of our watches. That’s genuine!

You place special emphasis on the ladies models - Does that mean that women need different diving watches?

Of course women can wear a men‘s watch - and we have noticed more and more women doing just that. We have observed this growing trend at fashion shows, with celebrities and at parties. But a lot of them want more petite or delicate models, which should also be available with diverse colour combinations. We just want to make sure that we can offer such time pieces for the women that prefer a smaller sized watch but would not want to forgo the quality of a CHRIS BENZ product. Furthermore, it is naturally to be expected that men have different requirements when it comes to design, especially since diving watches are being used more and more for everyday wear, we feel however that these requirements do not always coincide with the women that want to wear a CHRIS BENZ watch.

How long has the CHRIS BENZ watch brand been in existence?

CHRIS BENZ has been an internationally registered trademark since 1996. We specialize in “pure-bred“ diving watches. My great-great-grandfather, Johannes Bürk from Schwenningen, founded the Württemberg Watch Factory back in 1833.

OK, thank you very much for the interview.. All the best. - Thank you very much.

Chris Benz

Watches

  • FROM PROFESSIONALS FOR PROFESSIONALS
  • Watches Chronicle

FROM PROFESSIONALS FOR PROFESSIONALS

These watches, which are extremely popular with professional and amateur divers as well as other water sports enthusiasts and trendsetters alike, are designed to withstand the toughest underwater use and are designed to impress with their uncompromising ergonomic design, outstanding reliability and superior craftsmanship.

Solid marine stainless steel casings, precision mechanisms, reliable display instruments, helium escape valve as well as depthmeter technology and warranted water resistance of up to 200 bar - all are standard features integrated in our model range. Not only are our watches feature packed, but also utilize a specific crystal made of ultra scratch-proof and almost indestructible sapphire crystal. With a hardness of 9, the sapphire crystal is surpassed only by diamond with a measure of 10 on the hardness scale from 1 to 10. Standard watch crystals have am average hardness of 6,5.

An additional feature of our depthmeter is the integration of handy lunettes which allow for easy adjustment even when wearing neoprene gloves. The most notable feature is the use and integration of the solid marine stainless steel casings in all of our watch models as well as the extremely robust straps. These features are guaranteed to withstand even the bite of a Great White Shark.

A CHRIS BENZ watch meets every challenge. CHRIS BENZ watches are more than a diver‘s watch, they are a very special attitude to life.

An attitude to life, that connects people worldwide.

Get a part of CHRIS BENZ - SHARK PROOF. !

WATCHES CHRONICLE

Chris Benz

Features

  • High Performance Technology
  • dictionary

High Performance Technology

Each model was developed by professional divers, dive guides, world class surfers and sailors, and underwent tests and improvements in our own test centres in Germany and South Africa to guarantee absolute satisfaction. Equipped with outstanding technical features a CHRIS BENZ watch is a step ahead of every challenge. CHRIS BENZ - stands for diver´s watches, made from professionals for professionals.

Thus, the models were already exposed in extreme conditions during the development phases in our own laboratory - the CHRIS BENZ LAB. Some tests each one of our CHRIS BENZ models has undergone include:

  • The Heat stability of the solid marine stainless steel case has been tested in conditions at 1000 °C
  • Water-resistance test during extreme as well as practical conditions by leading athletes of the CHRIS BENZ Ocean Team
  • Accuracy test of movement in a certified shake test (CHRIS BENZ Selected Movement®)
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Chris Benz

Shark Proof.

SHARK PROOF. „shark-bite resistant“

All watches of CHRIS BENZ are SHARK PROOF. -
proven to withstand the bite of Great White Shark.

The SHARK PROOF. - test was carried out under real conditions by experienced divers and shark experts off the waters of Gansbaai in South Africa known as Shark Alley. During the test, the watches were subjected to the bite test by a real Great White Sharks in the wild.

Only CHRIS BENZ watches, which have survived this bite test, may rightfully be described as SHARK PROOF. (“shark-bite resistant”). The sharks were not harmed during the performance of the test!

Inexperienced water sports enthusiasts are strongly advised not to try this test themselves when encountering sharks. It is definitely preferable to treat these elegant sea predators with the respect they deserve and admire them from a safe distance.

Dive Watch

Brand No.1

Shark Proof.

Start your adventure now

Chris Benz

One

dive into
another world

Surfing, snorkeling, swimming, sailing or diving
weightless in the blue depth up to 200 meters?

No challenge is too big for a CHRIS BENZ ONE!

Chris Benz

One

3
CBO SI KB SW

Chris Benz

Depthmeter

tested in extreme conditions

The CHRIS BENZ DEPTHMETER collection builds the High - End - Level of diving watches worldwide.

Professional and amateur divers from all over the world rely for many years on the professional diving watches with integrated depthmeter technology and many other useful features.

High Performance meets superior craftsmanship as well as uncompromising ergonomic design. So each underwater adventure will be unforgettable!

 

Chris Benz

Depthmeter

7

Chris Benz

Surf&Sail

from professionals
for professionals

Watersport isn´t just any sport, it’s an attitude for life.

To be one with the wave while surfing or circumnavigate the wolrd by sailboat - meets your challenge.

Signatur: Björn Dunkerbeck
&nsbp
SURFSAIL Björn Dunkerbeck Chronograph SIGNATURE EDITION

Chris Benz

SURF&SAIL

Björn Dunkerbeck Chronograph

SIGNATURE EDITION

Watersport isn´t just any sport, it’s an attitude for life.

The international Star and Icon of watersport, Björn Dunkerbeck, represent this view with his own “Signature Edition” - the CHRIS BENZ SURF&SAIL Björn Dunkerbeck Chronograph SIGNATURE EDITION.

Besides the scratch-proof sapphire crystal the watch is equipped with a special signature of the 41th world champ on the dial as well as a special engraving on the back encasing.


diameter (bezel): 43.00 mm
height: 15.40 mm II width of watch strap: 22.00 mm
weight (without watch strap): 94.00 g

  • Single-sided turnable bezel Device for reading and controlling the elapsed or remaining dive time. The single-side pivoting mechanism avoids falsifying the showed time and therefore assures the safety of the diver.
  • Safety-Lighting-System Thanks to the specially developed layer the markers and hands are highly luminescent and thus they are longer shining than the current standard luminescent coatings.
  • Sapphire crystal The hardest of all crystals is extremely scratch resistant, less sensitive to impact, has a very high refraction and is almost indestructible.
  • Screw locked crown The double gaskets mechanism and the additional fine thread of the closable crown warranty absolute water-resistance.
  • solid marine stainless steel case with screw back
    and screw locked crown
  • engraved case back with serial number and special engraving of Björn Dunkerbeck
  • high-quality precise quartz movement
  • single-sided turnable bezel, diameter 43 mm
  • dial with luminescent hour markers and hands
  • sapphire crystal
  • 200 m/20 bar waterproof
  • stop watch, calendar
  • high-quality and durable rubber strap with printed decoration chart
  • signed genuine piece of the world championship sail and certificate
Unfortunately, there are no customize options for this product.

Chris Benz

Deep

master
of depth

CHRIS BENZ DEEP - Solid, strong, water resistant up to 2000 meters and almost indestructible
- created for the extreme and designed for the toughest underwater use.

Our answer to the question of the ultimate diving watch!

Chris Benz

Deep

6