Montblanc is, at the least, three separate brands: the Montblanc name itself covers a hugely diverse horological portfolio from €2,000- 500,000; Minerva brings its history of chronographs; and then there is Villeret – the minute production, high complication microbrand that makes couple of dozen pieces a year.
“In just a couple of years Jérôme has been developing many different lines, with different functions in great depth and with terrific efficiency. Now I think that the maison has to find a common language. There is a kind of ongoing grammar which has been written and structured through the different products,” he says warming to his literary and syntactical metaphor. “Now there’s the opportunity to put all these grammatical elements together and to start writing a story.”
Among the elements he is examining are: “The Montblanc emblem, which is an incredibly powerful symbol.” There are also “different interesting treatments of the surface of the dial that have been developed,” not least what he calls the “exploding star” guilloché that characterises the 4810. And he is currently mining the multitude of different numerals and indicators that have been used by Montblanc to find a powerful house signature. Simultaneously he is looking to identify unifying design traits within the movement itself.
It looks like both his left brain and his right brain will be at their busiest yet.