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True Watches for True People! - A Chat with Jupp Phillip CEO of Fortis

We sit down with the new Owner of Fortis Watches, Jupp Phillip, to talk Fortis, Watches, and what inspires Jupp to move the iconic Fortis brand forward.


Q: Jupp, thanks so much for taking the time to chat a little about Fortis Watches with us. It is truly an honor & pleasure. First things first, What (watch) are you wearing today?

A: Stratoliner «White Dust» on Blockbracelet. Our new masterpiece.



Q: Any particular reason for wearing that fortis today?

A: I always test all new watches for myself extensively. I go swimming, running, mountainbiking, etc. I deliberately expose them to extreme conditions, but also to everyday life. After all, it should keep what it promises.


Q: Tell us a little about yourself. When did you first come in contact with Fortis as a Brand and their watches?

A: It all started with my brother, who is a pilot. His statement was always "a real pilot wears a Fortis". Although I am not a pilot, I have bought my first Fortis in 2004, an "Official Cosmonauts" in titanium. Even though I had many other brands in my collection, the Fortis always had the longest wristtime. It just fit every situation and I still wear it today. Fortis has become my favorite brand over the years and when I had the chance as an entrepreneur to take over the company, I just had to do it.
- Actually, I come from the fruit business. I produce fruit juice concentrates and food coloring from fruits. But my passion and 120% commitment belongs to Fortis. In addition, I have been the drummer in a punk rock band for 30 years in my spare time, but over time this has become more of a hobby than a profession.


Q: As a Fortis enthusiast, you’ve seen more than 15 years of Fortis in your time, and several of those have been under your own direction. I’m sure you have some favorites. What are your favorite Fortis watches, and why? Could you pick one vintage and one modern that are your favorites?

A: Among vintage watches, it was always the "Official Cosmonauts". Both versions, the one from the 90s and later the B42 version. The model will also get a relaunch under my management. We owe that to the brand, but everything a little "redefined". For me still the best which Fortis has ever made. Because the new families were all created with me, it's hard for me to make a decision. But I think that the M-44 and the new Stratoliner are exceptionally well done. What I find so special about the Stratoliner is that we had the opportunity to create a watch from scratch for a completely new category, "Space Traveller". Without any specifications. No brand has ever made that before and it makes us unique worldwide. The Stratoliner is truly timeless, robust, luxurious and yet nonconformist. Just like the brand.


Q: We’re very excited about the new offerings from Fortis over the past couple of years and thrilled to be representing the brand in the US. The new Fliegers, Marinermasters, and Stratoliners are all stunning pieces. These watches all harken back to Fortis’s rich design history, watchmaking linage, and applications such as aviation and space, but in a new refreshing way. Could you tell us a little more about what inspired this renaissance, if you will, in the Fortis brand after your take over?

A: We call the whole thing "Tool Watch. Redefined." Ultimately, we didn't reinvent the brand, we just made it better. We simply left out what no one needs. And focused on what is really important. Design and function!!! Again and again, enthusiasts want to tell us what rules to follow when it comes to aviators or divers watches. We clearly say "no" to that. We make what is really important and do not care about pleasing everyone. The watch is in the foreground and not any pseudo rules. True Watches for True People!


Q: What might be some of your goals for Fortis in the future? Where do you see Fortis heading in the next few years?

A: We are for today's jeweler the perfect rounding off in the assortment. Besides the big mass brands and the freaky small brands, we offer an honest alternative for all customers who want a high-end product on their wrist, but not what everyone has. We also offer a professional and loyal partnership, not just marketing bullshit. We basically live what we say.

In addition, Fortis has the potential to be mentioned next to the big names because of its history and what it has done for the watch industry.


Q: In your own words, what is the Fortis brand to you? What makes it unique in today’s vast market of watch brands and watchmakers?

A: We are honest and our customers are close to our hearts, but at the same time we do not conform to the eternal mass market. If you want a real high-end watch, but want to clearly distinguish yourself from the masses you should come to us.


Thank you very much for chatting with us about Fortis. It has been a pleasure. We are excited to see what you and the team are doing at fortis and look forward to seeing more! 

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