Any avid collector or watch enthusiast will tell you the same thing – a watch is not something you slap on your wrist for mere bragging rights. When considering a timepiece, it has to be technically interesting, simple yet innovative with hidden complications, and not so busy that it doesn’t serve its main function as a watch.

With that in mind, several local hardcore watch connoisseurs have branched out with their own brands to fill up gaps in the watch industry. “As a collector, you always want something different but you realise that in recent years, what you want doesn’t really exist anymore,” shares Ming Thein from Ming Watches.

But let’s be honest: local watchmakers may not be something that you’d consider investing your money in especially with many mainstream watch brands out there offering an ‘internationally certified’ quality. The perception remains – international names triumph over local ones.

This notion is about to change with the recent rise of local watchmaking brands that are making waves internationally. Unbeknownst to many, these brands have been considered key players in the industry with the latest being Nayan, a Sabah-based watch brand that recently made a name for itself when Flash actor Grand Gustin sported one of its timepieces at the Teen Choice Awards in Los Angeles last year. That very model was sold out within hours.

If you’re looking to upgrade from a run-of-the-mill entry-level timepiece but not quite ready to splurge on a diamond-encrusted watch, consider a local luxury watch brand. The six local Malaysian watchmaking brands offer impeccable designs that are chic and timeless, reinforced with Swiss mechanical features, parallel flexibility and quality. Get your watch game up with something local for a change especially with one that rotates counterclockwise.