Audemars Piguet said Friday that it appointed François-Henry Bennahmias as chief executive officer.

Bennahmias served as interim-ceo since the end of May when then-ceo Philippe Merk left the company. At the time, the high-end Swiss watchmaker cited “differences in company strategy” when Merk, who had been ceo for two years, departed.

The brand turned to the 48-year-old Bennahmias, who began his career at Audemars Piguet in 1996 as assistant marketing and sales manager for Asia-Pacific and Europe.

Three years later, Bennahmias was promoted to president and ceo of Audemars Piguet’s North America business, working out of its New York office.

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