Cover Max Büsser making his acceptance speech after winning the "Aiguille d’Or" while Jean-Christophe Babin, CEO of Bulgari, looks on (Photo: GPHG)

The founder of MB&F reflects on winning the best watch of the year at GPHG 2022

On November 10, 2022, MB&F finally won the coveted “Aiguille d’Or” at the Grand Prix Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG). The Swiss watchmaker is no stranger to the awards, having won four times in the past in various categories, but this is the first time that it clinched the top prize at the Oscars of watchmaking. 

The watch that did it was the LM Sequential Evo that wowed the world with a movement that boasts two independent chronographs, a first in horology. It was developed by Belfast watchmaker Stephen McDonnel, who is also the brainchild behind the LM Perpetual Calendar that won the best calendar watch prize at GPHG 2016. 

See also: 8 Under-The-Radar Independent Watchmakers You Should Know

MB&F founder Max Büsser shares with Tatler about the triumphant evening, during which he also walked away with the Challenge Watch Prize for M.A.D. Editions' M.A.D.1 Red, a beguiling wristwatch with a lateral time display.

See also: Bulgari Wins Top Prize at GPHG 2021

How does it feel to win the “Aiguille d’Or” Grand Prix at GPHG 2022?

Even though we never create to get awards, the whole team is incredibly proud. The pure exhilaration we get from creating something exceptional is our reward. Why else would we have created 20 insane calibers in 17 years?.

The “Aiguille d’Or” is a priceless message from our peers. I have a feeling this prize is as much about the Sequential watch as it is about our nearly two decades of creativity in high-end watchmaking.

Why do you think Legacy Machine Sequential Evo did it for MB&F?

Simply because it is revolutionary and stunning. Stephen McDonnell has conceived the very first chronograph in history where there is no loss of amplitude, hence precision, when you use it. That in itself is incredible.

This in turn allowed him to dream the impossible: on one single movement to cumulate four different functions, two of them world premieres—two independent chronographs, a split-second function, a sequential function, and a chess tournament aggregator.

Coupled with 585 hand-finished components and you have a truly unique piece of horology.

Why did you work with Stephen McDonnell on this and will you work with him again?

I have met a lot of very talented people in my world, but Stephen is the only genius. He has a mind like no other, which is set on resolving century-old issues of high-end watchmaking. At the same time, he wants to make watch owners' lives easier.

Stephen had given us 10 years of his life to create two revolutionary movements: the Legacy Machine Perpetual and the Legacy Machine Sequential. I'm so happy that the world is finally recognising his incredible mind.

Tatler Asia
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