In 1883, Gottlieb Hauser rallied a few Swiss manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers under the moniker ‘Union Horlogère’, later known as Alpina (1886). A few German companies in the watch world, as well as US companies Gruen and Hamilton, eventually joined this Union; however, in 1917, due to political tensions during WWI, the Swiss and the Germans split into two different organizations. In 1942, the German union was renamed ‘Deutsche Uhrmacher-Genossenschaft Alpina’, and registered its acronym, ‘Dugena’, as a commercial brand.
After the Second World War, Dugena would become one of Germany’s most successful watch brands, reaching its apex in the 1970’s and surviving the quartz crisis, having over 2,000 retail locations in Germany alone. Eventually, it would be sold along with Junghans (1993) to EganaGoldpfeil, starting the brand’s decline until it changed hands again in 2009, to a German group headed by Heinz W. Pfeifer —former managing partner of Glashütte Original.
This Dugena chronograph, believed to be from the late 1960’s or early 1970’s, is a shining example of the racing and exotic dials of the period, using contrasting colours and geometric shapes to create a timepieces that are modernistic and funky in equal parts. Powered by a Swiss Valjoux 7733, it keeps good time and it is accompanied by a stitched racing strap.