Brands that you don't know are Singaporean

By Nur Qa'riah | 26, May, 2022
Brands that you don't know are Singaporean

Singapore is a hub for foodies, shoppers, and travelers alike but apart from iconic brands like Charles & Keith, Razer, and Akira, what are some other local brands that come to mind when we talk about local brands?

While online shopping has made it a lot easier for us to purchase from brands overseas, many locally produced brands can serve the same quality products.

Here, we are going to share some of the local brands that we may have missed. Let’s spread some love to our homegrown brands!


TWG Tea Company

TWG Tea collection

Image Credit: TWG Tea on Instagram

We’ve probably seen this brand while walking along Changi’s departure hall, haven’t we?

What many of us don’t know about the TWG (The Wellbeing Group) Tea was that it was established and founded in Singapore in 2008 and then managed to quickly expand themselves as one of the world’s first luxury tea brand. The brand was co-founded by Moroccan-born Taha Bouqdib, Maranda Barnes, and Rith Aum-Stievenard, celebrating the year 1837 when Singapore became a trading port for teas.

When the brand was first established, they launched their first Tea Salon & Boutique at Republic Plaza in Singapore. Since then, TWG Tea has expanded with over 50 Tea Salon & Boutiques in 23 countries including Asia (Australia, Cambodia, Canada, China, Germany, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Macau, Malaysia, Morocco, Philippines, Portugal, Qatar, Russia, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, and Vietnam).

So for all that are searching for the perfect gift for friends and loved ones, TWG Tea should not be missed out by the tea lovers and travelers.

Browse their tea collection online, TWG Tea


Creative Technologies

creative technologies bluetooth tws

Image Credit: Creative Labs on Instagram

Creative Technologies, better known as Creative, was founded by Sim Wong Hoo and Ng Kai Wa in 1981 to fulfill their dreams of bringing high-quality audio into the world of computers.

Did you know that Creative Technologies’s Sound Blaster card sets the standard for computer audio? So anytime we use our computers to stream shows and music and play video games, let's remember to thank our Singaporean tech pioneer for our daily entertainment.

Creative offers various tech products from headphones to speakers to webcams to adapters. With more companies looking to adopt remote work permanently, why not consider Creative products to add to your home office!

Shop online, Creative Labs



The story of how Boncafé Coffee started is a little more romantic as compared to the other brands we’ve listed.

Mr. W. E. Huber, a Swiss National and commodities trader, was inspired to open a small business roasting 100% pure gourmet coffee upon his chance encounter with his wife when she shared the woes of finding a decent cup of coffee in Singapore (isn’t that so sweet). Mr. Huber will later be known as “Mr. Boncafé”, the Founder and Group Chairman of Boncafé Group of Companies.

Today, Boncafé’s products are distributed in 15 different markets including China, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Indonesia, Maldives, Hong Kong, and the United Arab Emirates.

They have something for both the coffee and tea drinkers, so be sure to check out their products the next time you visit the supermarket.

Boncafé products available at the local supermarket, Boncafé


Tocco Toscano

tocco toscano collection

Image Credit: Tocco Toscano on Facebook

Growing up in a poor neighborhood in Chinatown, Singapore, the brand’s founder James Lor credits his success to life lessons on resilience from his early days.

Firstly established in Italy by Mr. Valecchi Stefano, James received the licensing rights for TOSCANO after his apprenticeship with Mr. Stefano.

Upon James’s arrival in Singapore, TOSCANO was first launched in 1987 at various department stores throughout the country. Subsequently, they rebranded themselves to TOCCO TOSCANO in the mid-1990s. With over 30 years of experience, TOCCO TOSCANO creates leather goods for the modern women’s lifestyle. Pretty cool, right?

They’ve recently launched their second edition of TAF(The Art Faculty) in celebration of the abilities and talents of people on the autism spectrum for World Autism Awareness Month.

Don't miss out on their fine leather products available in Singapore, Thailand, and Indonesia.

Multiple locations in Singapore, Thailand, and Indonesia, TOCCO TOSCANO

The 1872 Clipper Tea Co.

That’s right, there is another tea brand on this list. As the name shows, they pay homage to the clipper ships that carried fresh tea around the world. The founder B.P de Silva, started his jewelry boutique while serving his customers with rich Ceylon tea at High Street. And the rest is history.

1872 Clipper Tea tea blends are served at 260 F&B establishments in Singapore and distributed in Malaysia, Brunei, Cambodia, Thailand, and the Maldives.

Shop online, 1872 Clipper Tea



scanteak interior collection

Image Credit: SCANTEAK Singapore on Instagram

Initially called Hawaii Interior Decoration back in 1974, they started with a mere 400sq ft office in Joo Chiat. The brand SCANTEAK was conceived in 1988 to provide premium furniture design and quality. They’ve expanded with over 100 showrooms in countries such as Japan, Taiwan, and Canada. From bowls to bed frames to wardrobes, SCANTEAK has it all.

Aside from that, in 2019, SCANTEAK launched a design collaboration with students of NAFA. Yay for supporting local talents!

Showrooms islandwide, SCANTEAK


Pearlie White

Pearlie White is the only homegrown Singapore oral care brand with manufacturing facilities in Singapore. Despite the high costs, Pearlie White continues to carry out their product manufacturing in Singapore.

Taking pride in being the single fully Singapore-owned brand. Its roots can be traced back to 1869, when Dr. Cheong Chun Tin was the first dentistry practitioner in Singapore. Bet you didn’t know that, did you?

Find their products at multiple locations including Watsons and Guardian, Pearlie White


CrescentRating and HalalTrip

Yes, I had to include them both on this list! CrescentRating is a brand for halal-friendly travel, providing businesses from abroad with a unique rating and accreditation service. They are now a globally recognized standard for the Muslim travel market. So should you see a CrescentRated establishment while traveling, know that a Singaporean company accredited them.

Fun fact: CrescentRating was founded by Fazal Bahardeen in 2008 which later acquired HalalTrip in 2013.

While CrescentRating provides services for travel establishments, HalalTrip brings you all the tips and tricks for Muslim travelers (check out their latest Halal Travel Guide to New York City).


Supporting Local Brands

If I were to include every local brand, the list would be endless. But be sure not to miss out on trying the various local brands that we, as locals and travelers, can show our love to.

Were there any famous Singaporean brands that surprised you with its local roots?

An explorer to learning new things about the world. Qa'riah enjoys finding quiet and hidden spots in this busy world. Sharing stories and places through HalalTrip is her joy.

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