Audemars Piguet was founded in 1875 by two young enthusiast watchmakers, 23-year-old Jules-Louis Audemars met Edward-Auguste Piguet, then only 21, at Vallée de Joux, which is considered to be the cradle of prestige watch-making. Their hometown was Le Brassus. When they graduated school they went to Vallée de Joux to start working in their favorite field of watch manufacturing. The company opened its first branch in Geneva in 1889, and began creating its own components and assembling within its factory with direct supervision and strict quality control. The business started with Audemars managing the production and technical part and Piguet focusing on sales, and success was not immediate. The Audemars Piguet trademark was registered in 1882, however it would be seven years later that the company was officially founded. At this point Audemars Piguet Watches et Cie became one of the largest employers for watch-making in the whole of Vaud, southwestern Switzerland. Today the company, along with Patek Philippe and Vacheron Constantin, is sometimes claimed to be one of the top three Swiss watchmakers. Every timepiece manufactured in-house is still made using the old-fashioned hand-made technique.