The company was founded in 1988 by Aletta Francoise Frédérique Stas-Bax and Peter Constant Stas. Its name is derived from the names of great-grandparents of each founder – specifically Frédérique Schreiner (1881–1969) and Constant Stas (1880–1967), the latter of which founded a company producing watch dials in 1904.
In 2002, to diversify the Frédérique Constant group, Stas and his wife acquired Alpina Watches, a manufacturer of Swiss sports watches founded in 1883.
Frederique Constant has grown into one of the larger Swiss watch manufacturers. In 2011, production reached over 120,000 watches, sold in over 2,700 points of sale in 100+ countries around the globe. Frederique Constant positions itself in the accessible luxury segment, with most of its watches selling in the price range of CHF 1,000–5,000 retail. In 2011, the company said that it expected to continue growing at an annual rate of 25%, doubling in size every three years.
In May 2016, Citizen announced its intention to acquire Frederique Constant Holding SA, which includes Frederique Constant, Alpina Watches and Ateliers deMonaco.