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About Time

Former national sprinter Calvin Kang on making the transition from sportsman to entrepreneur, and how he launched his own men’s fashion watch line.

By Yong Shu Chiang      6 July 2018

One Of Singapore’s Fastest Men Has Time On His Mind.

For nearly two-thirds of his life, former national athlete Calvin Kang has strived for fast times over 100m. Now 28, the self-proclaimed “dreamer, athlete and entrepreneur” has finally hung up his spiked shoes and left the athletics track for good. “When I was a kid, I used to dash around a lot and would sometimes break things,” says Calvin. “I used to play catching, and was fast enough to catch everyone in a couple of minutes.” At 10, he started training with the school team. Two years later, he won one of his first competitive events, capturing gold with a 13-second 100m sprint. In 2008, he represented Singapore at the Summer Olympics held in Beijing.

Recently, after his retirement from athletics, he is dealing with time again. The national junior 100m record holder launched his own line of men’s fashion watches under the brand Monsieur. “Every gentleman deserves to have that feeling, of being on the podium,” he says, explaining the distinctive brand colours of gold, silver and bronze.

The watches, which have been sold online late last year following a successful Kickstarter campaign, have thicker cases than usual in men’s fashion watches. Their eye-catching 10mm girth – Calvin says he wanted the watches to look “bold” – is nearly twice that of standard timepieces. An analogue watch face with digital numerals, customisable rubber or leather straps, and thick, reflective hands are just some of the reasons why the watches have been ordered and delivered worldwide, to markets in the United States, Europe and Asia.

It was a whirlwind experience for Calvin, considering the first intention to start a business occurred to him last July. By December, he had raised $21,523, surpassing his $20,000 goal, to make and deliver 500 watches to his investors-cum-customers.

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