In 1999, Hoffmann began his career with Ulysse Nardin as the director of the United States corporate offices in Boca Raton, Florida.
Patrik P. Hoffmann is stepping up.
Hoffmann has taken the helm at renowned timepiece manufacturer Ulysse Nardin as the successor of beloved President and CEO Rolf W. Schnyder, who passed away unexpectedly in April.
“He left an extremely healthy company behind,” Hoffmann said of his predecessor. “He was a radiant guy. He was never short on words.”
And he left behind a prosperous company.
“[With] some companies, new management comes and they have to turn things around,” Hoffmann said. “We don’t have to turn anything around. We can keep going the way it was done. There will be changes, but it’s going to be an evolution.”
Other members of the UlysseNardin family were nothing short of supportive of Hoffmann in his new role.
“I feel very fortunate to know Patrik Hoffmann, and to be able to call him not only a work colleague but one of my best friends,” said Bobby Yampolsky of East Coast Jewelry, who opened the first UlysseNardin boutique in the United States in Boca Raton last year. “And [while] Rolf’s passing is very sad and unfortunate, Ulysse Nardin and Rolf should be very proud to have Patrik at the helm.”
Hoffmann’s career start with UlysseNardin has a bit of an interesting backstory. Hoffmann and Schnyder were actually neighbors in Malaysia.
“One day I had a colleagues dinner at my house and [Schnyder] asked ‘Do you want to work for me?’ and I said ‘No I don’t want to work for you, I never want to work for you,’” Hoffmann said. “And he didn’t say a word.”
But Schnyder didn’t give up that easily.
“The next day [Schnyder] called me up, I was driving the car with my wife,” Hoffmann said. “He called me up and said ‘Hey, yesterday when I asked do you want to work for me it was not to go and work in Switzerland, it was for you to actually go and work in America to open a subsidiary there in Florida.’ I said ‘Oh, Florida, that’s an interesting place. I could imagine living in Florida.’ So he hung up on me, he didn’t even finish, he didn’t say goodbye. And he called my wife, who was sitting next to me in the car. He called her and said ‘Hey, I talked to your husband. He wants to move to Florida to work for me, what do you think? And she said, ‘Florida, oh yeah, I could go to Florida.’”
Schnyder then called back Hoffmann.
“He said to me, ‘Oh, your wife, she wants you to move to Florida. Come to my home over the weekend let’s talk about it.’ And that’s how it started.”
And so, in 1999, Hoffmann began his career with UlysseNardin as the director of the United States corporate offices in Boca Raton, Florida.
Hoffmann was born in Switzerland and got his Swiss Federal Certificate before moving to the United States to earn his degree at Andrews University in Michigan. But he wasn’t done with his home country yet, returning in 1991 as the regional sales manager at Oris SA. Five years later, he moved to Swiss Prestige Ltd. as the managing director of the firm’s Swiss Prestige SdnBhd, Kuala Lumpur, and Swiss Prestige Pte Ltd, Singapore, moving his family to Malaysia. In 1997, he took on another role, managing Oris International Ltd., Hong Kong and in 1998, became the managing director of the Asia Pacific regional office of Oris SA Switzerland.
It’s no surprise, considering his long list of career accolades, that Hoffmann is largely credited for building UlysseNardin’s presence in the United States.