Sponsored post presented on aBlogtoWatch for advertiser

If the legend of a brand started and stopped with its most iconic timepiece, the world of watches would look much different. Breitling’s Navitimer might crowd out pieces equally deserving of praise — the Superocean, the Chronomat, etc. Brands like TAG Heuer would have most of their history completely eclipsed by the lore of the original Carrera, and the Blancpain Fifty Fathoms would suck up all the air, leaving other great offerings high and dry. Even brands with massive catalogs like Longines would be summarized by a single watch. In this dystopian world of horology, brand names would mean less than model names. Rolex might just be “Submariner” and Omega, “Speedmaster.”

Advertising Message

Even idle speculation like this is sure to ruffle feathers. As you read this, you might be cracking your knuckles, limbering up to dive straight for the comment section. But since we’re talking about watches, it should be said that this upside-down world of brand realignment — while just a thought experiment — is useful as it begs the question of legacy. What is a brand’s legacy?

For a brand like Fortis, keen watch fans might word-associate “Cosmonaut,” thanks to the brand’s 30+ year partnership as the exclusive supplier of timepieces for the Russian Federal Space Agency’s piloted missions. But when it comes to one of Switzerland’s most accomplished independent watchmakers, many people (present company excluded, of course) might not know, for example, that it was Fortis that mass-manufactured the first automatic watch in the 1920s. Or that it developed the world’s first mechanical-alarm chronograph.

Seeking to preserve such important stories, it was Jupp Philipp’s rescue of the company in 2018 that saved Fortis from extinction. The heap of defunct Swiss watch brands is plenty large, and Philipp’s investment went beyond mere speculative funding. Like Breitling mega-fan Georges Kern, Philipp serves as CEO of his favorite watch brand, lending an element of credence to its strategy. For watch geeks, there’s something reassuring that “one of us” is at the helm of a big Swiss horological concern, thus when Fortis announces new additions to its growing collection, watch fans pay attention.

Advertising Message

As such, 2021 saw the re-introduction of the Marinemaster line — a stalwart of Fortis’ catalog. Newly conceived as an outdoor companion whose geometric design cues throughout the case, strap, and dial hint at its nature as an adventure implement — not just a dive watch. Available in either M-40 or M-44 designations (reference to the case size) these are robust devices that directly compete with the likes of the Breitling Superocean, Tudor Black Bay, TAG Heuer Aquaracer, and Omega Seamaster in terms of specs and pricing.

Now in its sophomore year since reinvention, the M-44 Marinemaster takes on new life with fresh colors. The evocatively named “Woodpecker Green” variant pairs a black dial with conventional white lumed markers and indicators. There’s a certain no-nonsense feel emanating from the olive-drab-colored chapter ring and (depending on your variant) rubber strap. A black-dialed/black-strap version differentiates itself easily thanks to the off-white coloration of the Super-LumiNova painted indices and hands that are matched to the 0-60 rehaut. Rounding out the color options, the “Ocean Blue” interprets the green version in blue hues, making for a familiar (but not too familiar) appearance. Intriguingly, Fortis has also introduced a 50-piece limited edition of the Black Resin variant, albeit with an 18k gold bezel and golden hands — a touch of luxury in a lineup that’s otherwise all business.

Since its arrival last year, the Marinemaster’s hidden-lug case and proprietary Fortis Lock System® at 10 o’clock (exclusive to the M-44 versions) are the two biggest style cues that distinguish the line from the competition. With regard to the latter, the clever assemblage ensures that, when engaged, there’s no bezel-moving funny business. Deactivate it, and the bezel turns bi-directionally with ease. As in the original collection, the aforementioned geometric theme appears throughout the embossed dial, an intriguing touch for a watch competing in a category not known for interpretive dial design.

The rest of the Marinemaster is as robust as one might imagine: 500m water-resistant, anti-reflective sapphire glass, and a triple-gasket screw-down crown at 3 o’clock. Aficionado touches like drilled lugs and a brushed finish that matches the Marinemaster’s rugged nature prove that when watch fans speak, Fortis listens. Inside, Fortis’ WERK 11 movement, the manufacture calibre developed in collaboration with Kenissi, goes for 70 hours when fully powered, and thanks to its Chronometer certification, it can claim to be among the most accurate watches to come out of Switzerland. On the stainless steel block bracelet, the Marinemaster takes on an integrated look. Notably, the sliding quick-adjust clasp means this is a watch that even competes with the upper echelon of divers like Tudor’s Pelagos.

While not as well known as Fortis’ Cosmonaut — easily Fortis’ biggest claim to fame — the Marinemaster in all its new colors and top-notch specs makes clear that this is a timepiece on its way to establishing itself as one of Switzerland’s most serious tool watches. With a watch connoisseur at the helm, Fortis continues to write the Marinemaster story. Proving that great watches can’t be ignored, this is a timepiece made by watch fans, for watch fans.

The Marinemaster M-44 is available now for $4,150 USD (rubber Horizon strap) and $4,500 USD (Block bracelet). The limited-edition black resin gold variant is available on strap for $6,300 USD. For more information, visit the brand’s website.

Sponsored Posts are a form of advertising that allows sponsors to share useful news, messages, and offers to aBlogtoWatch readers in a way traditional display advertising is often not best suited to. All Sponsored Posts are subject to editorial guidelines with the intent that they offer readers useful news, promotions, or stories. The viewpoints and opinions expressed in Sponsored Posts are those of the advertiser and not necessarily those of aBlogtoWatch or its writers.


Brand: Fortis
Model: Marinemaster M-44
Dimensions: 44mm
Water Resistance: 500 meters
Case Material: Recycled stainless steel
Crystal/Lens: Sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating on both sides
Movement: WERK 11 Swiss Automatic self-winding manufacturer Chronometer-certified (time & date)
Power Reserve: 70 hours

  • Black Resin Gold on strap (F8120015)
  • Black Resin on strap (F8120017)
  • Black Resin on bracelet (F8120018)
  • Woodpecker Green on strap (F8120019)
  • Woodpecker Green on bracelet (F8120020)
  • Ocean Blue on strap (F8120021)
  • Ocean Blue on bracelet (F8120022) 

Advertising Message

Subscribe to our Newsletter