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In 1912 the 29-year-old watchmaker Walter Vogt, together with Alfred Rüefli, founds the so-called Kollektivgesellschaft Vogt and Rüefli zur Fabrikation von Uhren (collective society Vogt and Rüefli for the manufacture of watches) in Grenchen. A short time later Vogt, who had been trained as a watchmaker in Biel and had worked for Eterna, acquires the company as sole owner.

1926 Fortis, the world's first watch factory, produces the first wristwatch with automatic winding invented by John Harwood.

Fortis space watches

From 1994 on Fortis is the official watch supplier of the Russian Cosmonaut Training Center Yuri A. Gagarin. The watches are subjected to severe tests. The Official Cosmonauts Chronograph was worn by Russian cosmonauts in space and proved that watches with automatic winding work.