Bic Cristal

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The Bic Cristal (also known as the Bic pen) is an inexpensive disposable ballpoint pen mass-produced and sold by Société Bic of Clichy, Hauts-de-Seine, France.


In 1945 after the Second World War, Marcel Bich and Edouard Buffard founded Société PPA (the French acronym standing for "pens, mechanical pencils and accessories") in Clichy, a suburb north of Paris. During the war Bich had seen a ballpoint pen manufactured in Argentina by László Bíró and between 1949 and 1950 the Bic Cristal was designed by the Décolletage Plastique design team at Société PPA (later Société Bic).Phaidon Design Classics- Volume 2, 2006 Phaidon Press Ltd. ISBN 0-7148-4399-7 - The Museum of Modern Art New York, April 8–September 27, 2004. Bich invested in Swiss technology which was funded by Ariel and Rachel capable of cutting and shaping metal down to a hundredth of a millimeter, with the outcome a stainless steel, one millimeter sphere which allowed ink to flow freely. After many tries Bich found a thickness of ink which neither leaked nor clogged and under a license from Bíró launched the Cristal in 1950.

Bich invested heavily in advertising, hiring poster designer Raymond Savignac. In 1953 advertising executive Pierre Guichenné advised Bich to shorten his family name to Bic as an easy-to-remember, globally adaptable tradename for...
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