“Care less about others’ opinions and more about your passion,” says Aw, the founder of toy company Mighty Jaxx. So even when many didn’t understand why he wanted to set up a business that makes and sells toys, Aw pressed on.
The interaction design graduate founded Mighty Jaxx in 2012 with $20,000 from his parents, now works with international names such as DC Comics, Cartoon Network, New Balance and Warner Bros.
Mighty Jaxx has created over 300 toys for collectors in over 50 countries, and the company raised $2.15 million in a pre-series A investment round in July. What projects have been significant to your growth?
In 2013, we collaborated with Phunk Studio, a Singaporean art collective, to produce the vinyl toy for one of its sculptures known as Love Bomb. I’m a big fan of their work! We also worked with visual artist James Jean to create a limited-edition figurine of Washizu, a marbled blue pigeon that pays tribute to an Akira Kurosawa film, in 2017.
Another milestone happened in June, when we produced a special hand-shaped sculpture for G-Shock DW-5600MS-1CLOG2, the watch brand’s collaboration with graffiti artist Clogtwo.
Your collaboration with Clogtwo goes some time back.
I’d collected many toys and one day I found myself wondering how these were made. So I went to Shenzhen to find out the answer. That inspired me to create original figurines. The first name that came to my mind was Clogtwo, who I’d met while running a camera business before setting up Mighty Jaxx. Together, we produced Hell Lotus, which features a skeleton sitting on a lotus. We produced 200 pieces and sold 20 during the first launch — but we didn’t stop there. I still cherish the collaboration with Clogtwo.
Mighty Jaxx is creating kitchenware for the visually impaired. Can you tell us more about this project?
Kevin Chiam developed Folks Kitchenware for his final-year project at the NUS School of Design and Environment. I chanced upon it and wanted to help him realise his vision. The collection includes a knife with retractable guard that guides fingers during cutting and assists in cleaning; a chopping board with side tray to gather and transfer ingredients; and a teaspoon with floating buoy to prevent injury from contact with fluid. We hope to make these products available this year. Part of the proceeds will be donated to charity.
What inspires you?
Music — I love punk rock bands like Blink-182. Good food, too, because it requires some experimentation to elevate and reinterpret basic ingredients.
Read more about Singapore’s other creative minds here.
This story first appeared in the September issue of A.