AUTHORIZED PANERAI RETAILER
1860 – Giovanni Panerai opens his watchmaker’s shop on Ponte alle Grazie in Florence: serving not only as a shop and workshop but also as the city’s first watchmaking school, Officine Panerai’s history begins here. The shop later moves to its current location in the Palazzo Arcivescovile in Piazza San Giovanni, changing its name to “Orologeria Svizzera” at the beginning of the twentieth century.
To meet the military needs of the Royal Italian Navy, which it had already been supplying with high precision instruments for a number of years, Officine Panerai creates Radiomir, a radium-based powder that gives luminosity to the dials of sighting instruments and devices. Reference to the name “Radiomir” is documented in the supplement to the patent filed in France on 23 March 1916. The substance’s high visibility and the paint’s excellent underwater adhesive qualities immediately make the radium paste a key element in Officine Panerai’s production. The Radiomir patent will be the first of the many patents filed to mark Panerai’s history of innovation.