Shark week kicks off today, a week devoted to the mighty apex predator of the seas whose very existence is being threatened by overfishing. The often misunderstood and feared Great White, depicted as a ferocious man-eating creature in Steven Spielberg’s film Jaws, is essential to the natural order of marine ecosystems. As a brand closely linked to the sea, Ulysse Nardin Diver Chronograph takes its support of safeguarding sharks to the next level and will donate 1% of all sales of its shark watches to support the non-profit organisation For the Planet. It is also partnering with Sharktrust, a leading European shark conservation charity and has invited a new ambassador who knows about sharks intimately. And, as you have probably already guessed, Ulysse Nardin is releasing a limited edition of its Ulysse Nardin Diver Chronograph .
Sharks and Ulysse Nardin are a natural fit, harking back to the brand’s strong maritime ties in the shape of marine chronometers. Moving forward, the brand has now divided its marine watches into two families: the classical Marine collection with an emphasis on chronometry and the contemporary Dive collection, where the first shark-named watches surfaced with models like the Diver Hammerhead of 2010, followed by the Diver Great White, Diver Blue Shark and the Diver Lemon Shark. Such is Ulysse Nardin’s passion for sharks that the predator has become the brand’s mascot. Featured on advertising campaigns, the shark is even depicted navigating urban environments like Fifth Avenue to promote the Freak Vision.
Since 2020 the brand has become more involved with conservation programmes and launched a shark tagging campaign with non-invasive techniques, and partnered with US-based Ocearch to track the mighty predator. Ulysse Nardin has even adopted two Great Whites (Carcharodon carcharias) as brand ambassadors, Andromache, an adult female and Ulysse, a 12-foot-long Great White, both of whom can be tracked in real-time through Ocearch.
The brand’s latest partnerships are with Sharktrust, a UK-based shark conservation charity addressing unsustainable and unmanaged fisheries and supply chains that encourage the consumption of shark products. Recent reports indicate that oceanic sharks have declined by 71% in the last 50 years, mainly due to overfishing. Ulysse Nardin is also committed to supporting 1% for the Planet, a global organisation that channels support from businesses and individuals to non-profit environmental projects. And last, but by no means least, Ulysse Nardin Diver Chronograph has invited Mike Coutts to become a new friend of the brand. After having his leg torn off by a bull shark while bodyboarding in Hawaii, Mike Coutts turned his tragedy into a career of conservation as a marine photographer.
With all this goodwill and commitment in place, there had to be a watch, and the brand is releasing a grey and white version shark-themed of its 44m Diver Chrono. Playing with the colours of the Great White shark, the grey sandblasted dial evokes the rough skin of a shark and the white rubber details echo the white underside of this species.
Ulysse Nardin’s bold Ulysse Nardin Diver Chronograph underwent a facelift in 2019, gaining a more streamlined profile and a more contemporary face. Equipped with a 12-notched concave dive bezel with raised numerals and Super-LumiNova on the 0, the bezel has a white rubber insert. The 44mm is made of grey titanium with sandblasted and brushed finishings, in line with the instrumental character of this 300m water-resistant diver. Two pushers with white rings flank the screw-down crown.
The three slightly recessed counters – 30-minute at 3, small seconds at 9, and 12-hour and small seconds & date at 6 o’clock – feature crisp white and blue markings. The brand name with the applied anchor appears at noon with the inscription Great White below. As a resilient diver, the wide applied indices for the hours and all the hands are treated with Super-LumiNova that glows blue in the dark. Another fun detail is the shark motif on the white rubber strap that has been cut out to reveal the blue lume below. The rubber strap features the hallmark titanium element at 6 o’clock and can be ordered with a titanium tang buckle or a deploying buckle.
The profile of a Great White shark is stamped on the caseback protecting the brand’s in-house, automatic, integrated, column-wheel chronograph movement with a 48-hour power reserve. As the precursor of the use of silicon (silicium at UN), the escapement is made from silicon and beats at a modern 4Hz frequency.
The Ulysse Nardin Diver Chronograph 44mm Great White is a limited edition of 300 watches and retails for CHF 12,600 with the tang buckle and CHF 12,850 with the deploying buckle. As we mentioned, 1% of the revenues generated from the sale of this watch will be donated to support non-profit organisations committed to the conservation of sharks.