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A leading French jewelry firm, founded in 1847 by Louis-Francois Cartier (1819-1904).
Its headquarters are in Paris, with branches in several major centres. The founder was joined in 1872 by his son Alfred (1836-1925), and the latter, with his eldest son, Louis (1875-1942), moved the Paris business in 1898 to its present address, 13 Rue de la Paix.
In 1902 Alfred's second son, Pierre (1878-1964), opened a branch in London and in 1903 in New York City. In 1909 the London branch was taken over by-the youngest brother Jacques (1885-1942), by which time it had moved to its present address at 175 New Bond St.
A group headed by Robert Hocq (1917-79)acquired from the Cartier family the branches in Paris (1972), London (1974), and New York (1976). Hocq was Managing Director until his death when he was succeeded by his daughter, Nathalie (b. 1951),who since 1974 had headed the high-fashion jewelry department and promoted the boutique collection of jewelry known as Les Musts'.
Originally the firm made jewelry of enameled gold set with gemstones, which attracted a prestigious clientele, including French royalty and the future Edward VII;in recent years it has greatly expanded into new types and styles of jewelry, and is extending its world-wide operations.