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Hamilton is currently displaying its sponsored stunt aircraft at the Wisma Atria until 19th June and at a later date at VivoCity on 7th to 10th July.

Together with the small stunt plane will be displayed Hamilton's current collection of watches that should fulfil the needs of any new watch buyer wanting a well made watch with current designs at a reasonable price. I find the Khaki range particularly interesting for its dial work and its vintage look (see previous Hamilton posting on this blog). However, the Roadshow of the Hamilton watches at Wisma Atria ends on 29th May but will return again at Vivocity on the same dates mentioned above.

(NOTE: the images of the plane above was taken at the exhibition and I took the liberty of photoshopping the plane into a sky to make it a more interesting image. Click on them to view them in large format)


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A friend and fellow watch blogger Mr Peter Chong recently discovered that one of his images that he published on his blog was used by Avis for their ad campaign on their website. This graphic consisted of a converted image to black and white from a large format colour image of a rare Lange 31.

While copyright abuse is a common place occurrence on the Internet, to many, its a surprise that big businesses like Avis would indulge in such practices. Unfortunately, something similar has happened to WatchingHorology before where a rare image of the Opus5 was downloaded edited and altered to be used as the banner head of a watch retailer online. While there is legal recourse available to victims, such legal action will require considerable resources and time. The question that irks content creators and owners is how can copyright content be more effectively protected AND why are big public companies seemingly conducting themselves in this manner without concern of their public reputation?

Such illegal practices often drive content owners and creators to find methods to prevent such abuse from happening. One method that has some success - digitally watermarking the images - comes at a cost of the images being marred by the watermark. It is unfortunate but until an effective solution to prevent copyright abuses, there is little else bloggers can do to protect their intellectual property - short of going to court.

For more information about this Avis copyright abuse, CLICK HERE or the image above to read Peter Chong's report to view the his original image and his attempts to get a response from Avis themselves.

- HT


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Following on my earlier post about the new 2011 Explorer 2, here are two videos for fans of the model to consider - at least aesthetically - the differences between the two watches.

The out going Explorer 2 -

The incoming Explorer 2 -


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This video of the MIH watch is not new but having just discovered it myself, I thought such a beautifully designed watch deserved the attention. At least from the fans of the watch. What I love about the watch, in addition to all I have said before about it (check out the review and photomontages here),  is that because its such a classical design, it does not need updating - nor has the designers seen the need to do so.


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Just after posting on Biver's article in the FT reporting his new found status as a business guru, I received through the email a report on the new joint venture between Hublot and Manchester United that features a new Big Bang with the logo of the world famous football club on the dial.

While I am not a fan fashion watches or tie-ups such as this, I cannot fault Biver's vision for Hublot in making the brand and its watches synonymous with top spectator sports. Granted that there are many brands linked to sports but as reported in the FT report, it was Biver's vision to corner the football market as the official timekeeper for the key tournaments. Now with a tie in with the world's most watched soccer team - with a huge following in Asia, and potential customers. Biver continues to push the brand forward - seemingly single handed.
The image taken on 7th May - the day before the Manchester United their victory over Chelsea to potentially win the 2011 Barclay's League Championship.  


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The Financial Times featured a report on Mr Jean Claude Biver (Hublot CEO) and what the business community can learn from Mr Biver's business leadership style.

Anyone who has met the gregarious Mr Jean Claude Biver cannot deny how his charisma makes him even larger than his large frame. Currently the CEO of Hublot and seen in many parts of the world where watch collectors gather. Of recent times, he has spent a lot of his time in Asia where he seems to be able to put even non English speakers at ease with his style of conversation and public speaking. Having met Mr Biver several times and hearing him speak at length about his background and history of the companies he commanded, one gets the sense that he has an inherent knack of understanding how to create a product to fit the market.

He was the man who turned around Blancpain, Omega and now Hublot. All three brands are unlike each other with differing history and products. Yet Mr Biver is able to infect his potential customers on why his current product is well worth the attention and why it is desirable. If there ever was an claim to success of a brand by being dependent on effective marketing, Mr Biver's management of Hublot would easily be on the top of that list.

Some years back a renowned magazine conducted a poll on the movers and shakers of the Swiss watch industry and while I was given the option to name three persons. I submitted only one, Mr Biver. Apparently so did many others of the closed poll - which he won.

I recommend highly reading the report from FT (link above) to get a glimpse of how the man conducts his business and how far he has been in the industry. I am proud to have known him and most definitely hope to hear him speak again when he returns to our shores for another visit.


Postscript - I found this video of JC Biver on youtube for those who have not seen him speak in public before. The curious thing is that he does not speak in English naturally but one cannot miss his grasp of how to make an impact on the listener.


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Today I received an email from a Producer at Channel NewsAsia (CNA) for the programme "Cents & Sensibilities" - a programme about investing. The producer asked me whether I was willing to be interviewed for the purpose of determining how collectors can make gains or profits from watch collecting - i.e. specifically "Capital Appreciation". 

I get such requests from time to time, either for video recording or for magazines. I thought that since this is such an often requested topic, I would share here my response:


Thanks for the email. 
Thank you for your kind offer but I generally do not do TV interviews.  In any case, I am not one who believes that there is profit to be gained by watch collecting.

It’s very much like art collection. You either buy what you want or buy what others want. Sometimes one can get lucky and able to get both but still run the risk of not ever making even the investment cost because there is no secondary market. Capital appreciation only occurs on the sale of the acquisition. The gain is strongly affected by supply and demand and market reputation of the watch.

So ultimately it is the secondary market that dictates whether there is any gains to be made. Furthermore for every single piece that even breaks even in the secondary market, there are many thousands of watches sold with little or no residual value. Therefore it’s a myth that all luxury watches are good investments - perpetuated by who have invested heavily to talk it up.

If there were any such thing as smart money in watches – it is to buy earlier than everyone else those pieces that everyone else want.  This is the game that speculators play. But they run into all kinds of risks - as speculators do.

Ultimately, it is as simple as understanding the herd instincts and being able to get what the herd wants – if you want to buy for sole purpose of making capital gains.  Unfortunately, that is still not enough because you still need to have the financial strength to be able to find retailers who will be willing to sell you their prized pieces ahead of all the other valued clients.

Again let me be clear, there are a handful of pieces that continue to appreciate in value. They occur for reasons like rarity, fanatic following of the model or even brand, mythical reputation etc. The congruence of all these factors are rare and as such it’s like buying a Gull Wing Mercedes. It’s a renowned classic and there is a dwindling supply to market. Every world class car collector wants one and will pay really good money for it.  So as in cars, it is the same in watches. There are only a small handful of Gull Wing Mercedes in the market for trade.

Harry Tan


 - HT

Postscript - A clarification, the intent of this commentary was to convey the truth about the myth of the potential profits that collectors can make in buying watches. However, with proper and careful research and balancing both the buyer's wants and market's wants (thereby still enjoying the watch) it may be possible to retain some proportion of the invested value - this is very different from the expectation of profit. However there are no guarantees - even with careful research on rarity, secondary market pricing etc. No one can predict market behaviour and fashion changes. 

The whole aspect of the hobby of watch collecting may seem synonymous to watch investing but the compelling motivation for "collecting" is inherently different from "investing". Each individual that enters the market for luxury watches need to understand where he or she stands. The mistake for the uninitiated is to believe that buying luxury watches is an investment - clearly such expense is generally  not investing. 

I may at a later date post a follow up blog post on - "How do speculators make profits from luxury watches?" - which is a related question but the premise is completely different from watch collecting. 


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This watch was also photographed at the Collectors Dinner reported earlier. The owner had also just received delivery of this watch from the IWC factory. A rare piece and highly popular in absolutely mint condition.

Please note that clicking onto the image and downloading it is your assent to my condition of use that All Rights are Reserved and not for commercial use. I only assent it being downloaded to your personal computer and for your personal use only. 


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Photographed this watch just hours after the owner collected it from the JLC Boutique here in Singapore. Click on the image below to download the wallpaper. 

Please note that clicking onto the image and downloading it is your assent to my condition of use that All Rights are Reserved and not for commercial use. I only assent it being downloaded to your personal computer and for your personal use only. 


Welcome to
Watching Horology


  • This is a personal blog of Harry SK Tan on all things pertaining to Horology - from watch collecting, horolography, news and developments from all over the world particularly Singapore.
  • ©HarrySKTan2005

Horolography - noun, the art of photographing timepieces

Horolographer - Harry SK Tan

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