In 1895, Daniel Swarovski, a Bohemian inventor and visionary, moved to the village of Wattens, Tyrol in Austria, with his newly-invented machine for cutting and polishing crystal jewelry stones. From this beginning that revolutionised the fashion world, Swarovski has grown to be the world’s leading producer of precision-cut crystal for fashion, jewelry and more recently lighting, architecture and interiors. Today, the company, still family-owned and run by 5th generation family members, has a global reach with some 26,100 employees, a presence in over 120 countries and a turnover in 2011 of 2.22 billion euros. Swarovski comprises two major businesses, one producing and selling loose elements to the industry and the other creating design-driven finished products. Swarovski crystals have become an essential ingredient of international design. Since 1965 the company has also catered to the fine jewelry industry with precision-cut genuine gemstones and created stones. Showing the creativity that lies at the heart of the company, Swarovski’s own brand lines of accessories, jewelry and home décor items are sold through more than 2,200 retail outlets worldwide. The Swarovski Crystal Society has close to 300,000 members across the world, keen collectors of the celebrated crystal figurines. And in Wattens, Swarovski Kristallwelten, the multi-media crystal museum, was opened in 1995 as a celebration of Swarovski’s universe of innovation and inspiration.