An interesting media release landed in my in-box :
Schaffhausen, 7 March 2012 – IWC is proud partner of the US Navy Tactics Instructor Program, better known under the name of Top Gun, since 2005.
The exclusive license for the manufacturing of dedicated timepieces was officially granted by the US Navy seven years ago when IWC launched the first Edition of Top Gun watches. At that time IWC also acquired the trademark for the name “Top Gun” in class 14. In 2012 IWC extended the exclusive license and the Top Gun collection with the launch of a Big Pilot and a Pilot’s Chronograph Edition Miramar. These models pay tribute to the establishment of the United States Navy Fighter Weapons School in 1969 in Miramar, where the legendary training program for the world’s best fighter pilots originated.
Since 2005 IWC enjoys an official and close relationship with the US Navy Tactics Instructor Program and we are grateful for the support given by the organisation throughout the past seven years. In this context IWC and guests were granted an exclusive trip to the US Navy’s aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan where we gained veritable insight into a Top Gun Pilots training routine. The launch of the new collection in January 2012 was supported with access to authentic stories and a large variety of original materials to enrich our communication activities. In addition we were honoured with the presence of a highly decorated Top Gun Pilot and Commander of the US Navy at the SIHH in Geneva. The license fee paid to the US Navy for the past seven years goes into a charitable organization supporting retired Top Gun pilots.
The exclusive license agreement between IWC, the US Navy and their Tactics Instructor Program, our close and long-term relationship with the organisation and the registered trademark for the name “Top Gun” prevent any competitor from using the US Navy’s logo or the name “Top Gun” in relation to any of their products or respective communication. On the basis of these facts IWC was able to find an agreement with Breitling, where they refrain from launching any product named or making reference to “Top Gun” at Baselworld.
With a clear focus on technology and development, the Swiss watch manufacturer IWC Schaffhausen has been producing watches of lasting value since 1868. The company has gained an international reputation based on a passion for innovative solutions and technical ingenuity. One of the world’s leading brands in the luxury watch segment, IWC crafts masterpieces of Haute Horlogerie at its finest, combining supreme precision with exclusive design.
Department Manager Public Relations
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The Breitling watch in question to which this release alludes? It’s the limited edition (500) TOPGUN Chronomat 44 which you, like me, may have totally missed.
One has to wonder why :
a) it never occurred to them that they might not be able to do this;
b) why no-one thought to check/ confirm the previous point.
This would have passed through a lot of hands before it got to the release announcement point …
Here’s the IWC Top Gun Miramar, a 2012 release.