Norqain releases another Wild One Hakuna Mipaka in collaboration with wildlife ambassador Dean Schneider. With live photographs of the launch event.
We were at the launch event in Singapore (this afternoon!), and bring you this report, including the release information with commentary in italics.
New: Norqain Wild One Hakuna Mipaka Limited Edition
The Norqain Wild One Hakuna Mipaka NNQ3000QNX1LA/X001/3W1XR.20NQ will retail at SGD 8,700 inclusive of GST. Limited Edition of 300 pieces.
The Norqain Wild One collection is the core of the brand. And represents many of the values that the Norqain brand embodies with wildlife ambassador Dean Schneider.
The novelty is basically the same watch as the existing Wild One models, except for the dial pattern and the colour palette.
The interesting connection is that the colours of brown and san are inspired by King Dexter, the lead male lion of the Hakuna Mipaka pride. And sand from the Hakuna Mipaka Oasis has been integrated into the rubber shock absorber.
Aesthetically, we find the brown/sand hue of the watch to be rather attractive. The watch is powered by the Kenissi manufactured Calibre NN20/1, which should prove to be robust and reliable.
Dean told us during the launch event that he has been testing the watch in his daily life with the lions, which from the videos and photographs he showed us is a rather hard life for the watch. We briefly examined the watch on his wrist, and it looked fine.
Pricing have been kept at an even keel with the introduction models which were launched at about SGD 8,200. The first generation of the Hakuna Mipaka has exactly the same retail price of SGD 8,700. Interestingly, the Skeleton model we recently reviewed is slightly more expensive at SGD 8,800, and carries a Sellita movement.
NORQAIN and wildlife ambassador Dean Schneider come together again to raise funds and awareness for the Hakuna Mipaka wildlife oasis
Biel, Switzerland – 21 September 2023: For the third time, NORQAIN and wildlife ambassador Dean Schneider have come together to co-design a timepiece: this time, the Wild ONE Hakuna Mipaka Limited Edition.
The 300-piece limited edition is based on the revolutionary NORQAIN Wild ONE and features a number of bespoke finishes that bring Dean’s conservation mission into sharp focus, including a brown and sand colour palette inspired by King Dexter of the Hakuna Mipaka pride, and sand from the Hakuna Mipaka Oasis integrated into the rubber shock absorber. Ten per cent of proceeds from sales of the watch will contribute to Dean’s mission.
Dean’s incredible story continues to inspire. The 30-year- old Swiss began his career in finance, but gave it all up to move to South Africa and establish the Hakuna Mipaka Oasis, a wildlife sanctuary and animal rehabilitation centre. “Hakuna Mipaka” is Swahili for “no limits”. Dean is a true NORQAINER – his life, his way.
“Dean is an incredible guy and everyone at NORQAIN is full of admiration for his drive, his passion and his achievements,” said Ben Küffer, NORQAIN founder and CEO. “Collaborating with him and creating beautiful watches in support of his work at the Hakuna Mipaka Oasis is a real privilege for us and we’re delighted to present this special edition of our Wild ONE.”
The Hakuna Mipaka Oasis is a unique place that covers 400 hectares of South African wilderness. It’s home to thousands of species, including zebras, giraffes, leopards and a pride of lions. Dean’s decision to keep the area closed to tourists means his conservation mission is funded entirely by donations.
The partnership also highlights NORQAIN’s commitment to the environment and to animal cruelty-free watches. NORQAIN’s collection contains no animal products, while the five-year-old family-owned company is CO2 neutral certified by Swiss Climate.
WILD ONE HAKUNA MIPAKA LIMITED EDITION
The Wild ONE Hakuna Mipaka Limited Edition is distinguished by its palette, a rich golden brown that echoes the colour and texture of King Dexter of the Hakuna Mipaka Oasis, a majestic lion with whom Dean has developed a special bond since Dexter was a lion cub at the oasis.
The watch’s revolutionary 25-part case has a dark brown ultra- robust and ultra-light NORTEQ® cage sandwiching a sand- coloured rubber shock absorber that contains sand from the oasis, giving it an earthy, lion-inspired look. NORTEQ® is an exclusive carbon fibre material that as well as being lightweight and highly shock-resistant can also be colourised. NORQAIN is the first watch brand to offer a mass-dyed carbon fibre composite case allowing a variety of colours in addition to the standard black carbon look. Combined with the titanium container that houses an automatic mechanical movement, the 42mm watch weighs just 84 grams and yet has been shock-tested to 5’000g. Its go-anywhere profile is further enhanced by its 200-metre water resistance rating.
The story continues in the watch’s matching dark brown dial and sand-coloured rubber strap. Both are stamped with a lion’s fur pattern and detailed with the Hakuna Mipaka shield-and- spear logo. The diamond-cut skeleton hands and indexes are finished with a red-gold plating, completing a look that evokes the dusky evening light in the Hakuna Mipaka Oasis.
The watch is powered by the ultra-reliable Manufacture Calibre NN20/1 by Kenissi, a chronometer-certified Swiss Made automatic mechanical movement with a 70-hour power reserve. It’s visible through a sapphire crystal case back decorated with the “HAKUNA MIPAKA” logo and “ONE of 300”. The case back surround is engraved with Dean’s mission statement: “We need to learn to love them exactly the way they are and not the way we wish them to be!”
The watch is finished with the NORQAIN plate, a plate on the watch’s left flank, which can be engraved to the owner’s specifications. Each Wild ONE Hakuna Mipaka Limited Edition (SGD $8,700) will be presented with a special sand- coloured Hakuna Mipaka cap and special Hakuna Mipaka packaging.
This is the third watch NORQAIN has produced in collaboration with Dean, following the sold-out Wild ONE Hakuna Mipaka limited-edition of 2022 and the women’s Independence 40mm Hakuna Mipaka introduced earlier this year. Ten per cent of the proceeds generated by sales of the Wild ONE Hakuna Mipaka Limited Edition will contribute to support Dean’s mission and projects which he runs at the oasis.
THIS IS NORTEQ®
NORTEQ® is an innovative, highly shock-resistant carbon- fibre material that was created exclusively for NORQAIN and its watches in a close collaboration between NORQAIN, Jean-Claude Biver and BIWI SA. As well as being six times lighter than steel and three-and-a-half times lighter than titanium, it can also be colourised, giving NORQAIN’s designers the freedom to create and innovate. This carbon-fibre composite is made of carbon fibre, which is commonly used in the aerospace industry, and a high- performance polymer matrix containing 60 per cent bio- sourced material (castor oil).
“Thanks to the partnership with NORQAIN, we’ve been able to fund ongoing operations at Hakuna Mipaka Oasis,” says Dean. “These include food for the animals, veterinary bills, costs for guards and animal keepers, electricity, and maintenance work on the camps. Another important project included my trip trip to Kenya, where I was able to go into schools to educate young people about the animal kingdom, bringing it into the hearts of children and inspiring them to protect wildlife.”
Ahead of the release, NORQAIN ran a social media giveaway to attend the watch’s launch event in Singapore, including a meet-and-greet with Dean Schneider and NORQAIN’s Founder and CEO Ben Küffer. Entrance was via Instagram and the winner and a plus-one will enjoy a fully funded NORQAIN adventure from 21 September to 23 September 2023.
Norqain Wild One Hakuna Mipaka Specifications
LIMITED EDITION FACTS Limited edition of 300 pieces
NORQAIN Manufacture Calibre NN20/1 by Kenissi
Mechanical automatic movement
Chronometer certified (COSC)
Personalised bridge with NORQAIN core values: “Adventure – Freedom – Independence”
Personalised NORQAIN oscillating weight
70 hours power reserve
Balance frequency: 28’800 vibrations per hour (4Hz)
DIAL & HANDS
Sand colour dial with stamped “lion fur” pattern with and “HAKUNA MIPAKA” logos
Diamond-cut flat skeleton indexes, red gold plated, with white X1 Super-LumiNova® spots
Diamond-cut faceted hour and minute hands, red gold plated, filled with white X1 Super-LumiNova®
Diamond-cut flat seconds hand, red gold plated, filled with white X1 Super-LumiNova®
Brown NORTEQ cage, Sand colour rubber shock absorber, Sandblasted titanium container and case back with engraving
Width between lugs: 22mm
Lug to lug: 49.40mm
Water resistance: 200m
Screw-down crown, overmolded with sand colour rubber and NORQAIN logo
Brown NORTEQ NORQAIN plate on the left side of the case
GLASS & CASE BACK
Double anti-reflective, scratch proof, sapphire glass
Open case back with scratch proof sapphire glass featuring the “HAKUNA MIPAKA” logo and “ONE of 300” mention
Warranty can be extended to five (4+1) years by joining the NORQAINER Community