Swiss watchmaker Epos recently released its limited-edition Horse Watch, a collectors' item for connoisseurs of fine watches.
Created in celebration of the Year of the Horse, only 168 pieces of the limited edition Horse LE is available worldwide.
ATG Watch Sdn Bhd chief executive officer Tham Onn Chuan, the sole distributor of Epos (pronounced air-pos) watches in Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Indonesia and Laos said the Swiss watch brand's decision to commemorate the Year of the Horse with a watch was a sign of its popularity in the Asian market.
"Epos is among the finest watchmakers in Switzerland, having started out in 1925 as a manufacturer of watches for private labels.
"Today, Epos is still a family-run business which is focused on maintaining its traditional watchmaking heritage.
"Over the past decade, the brand has fast gained a following in the Asian market, hence the decision to mark the Year of the Horse with a commemorative watch which will surely be appreciated here," said Tham.
Asian countries are now the largest consumer of luxury watches and Swiss watches are highly-prized for their handcrafted precision.
Tham said the Horse Watch featured a fine-crafted movement which could be admired through its transparent case back.
"One of the characteristics of Epos watches are their complicated mechanisms. A basic watch has three hands and a date window but complicated mechanical watches have multiple displays such as hour, minute, second, date, day, month and even moon phases.
"The see-through case back showcases the watch's intricate movement," he said.
While its intricate movement celebrates the brand's expertise in watch-making, the dial design commemorates the once-in-12-years Year of the Horse with a silhouette of a golden horse and a Chinese inscription which declares "Bringing good fortune and success to all in the year 2014, the Year of the Horse".
Limited-edition watches are indeed special, created by the watchmaker to mark memorable occasions.
Tham said in Epos' long history, the Horse Watch was only the second release of a watch created just to mark a special year in the Chinese zodiac.
The first was the release of its Dragon Watch two years ago which commemorated the Year of the Dragon.
"You know a watch is something special when only 168 pieces are available worldwide. Asians would, of course, appreciate the Horse Watch as the horse is considered the noblest of all the animals of the Chinese zodiac but special releases are also a favourite of collectors' regardless of whether they are Chinese or not.
"A good watch, especially a limited edition one, is definitely something to be treasured and passed on to the next generation," he said.
Another advantage of the Horse Watch and other timepieces in the Epos stable is its attractive pricing.
The Horse Watch retails for RM5,568 which is a steal compared to similar Swiss-made timepieces.
"Although Epos watches possess all the hallmarks of a Swiss watch, the brand's pricing strategy makes its watches ideal entry-level collectibles.
"Some people buy watches to elevate their status and pay higher prices for a popular brand but collectors buy watches for the mechanism and its beauty," he said.
The Epos limited edition Horse Watch is available at authorized Epos retailers nationwide until stocks last.