Bonhams, London, 11 June 2014
Sold for £146,500
The late Dr. George Daniels made relatively few wristwatches, so it will come as little surprise to learn that those bearing his revered name have soared in value – notably the ones from the Millennium series that he made with the help of his protégé Roger Smith.
The good doctor is believed to have produced 48 yellow gold Millennium watches (he made 12 a year for 4 years) followed by six in white gold with a silver chapter ring. They all contained the revolutionary Daniels Co-Axial escapement that is now used by Omega and were originally sold directly from the time lord’s Isle of Man workshop to friends and acquaintances whom he deemed worthy of owning one, with prices ranging widely from £20,000 – £30,000.
Some say the variance was not so much related to specifications or materials, but more to do with how much he liked the cut of the prospective purchaser’s jib.
Pre-owned values began to increase almost immediately and, by 2009, the record was set at £79,250 only to be shattered in the 2012 sale of clocks and watches from the Daniels collection in which a white gold Millennium made £145,250. Bonhams has now bested that with this “less rare” yellow gold version, the most expensive Daniels Millennium yet sold at auction.