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Eyeing Luxury Market Growth


Patrick Chalhoub, co-CEO of The Chalhoub Group, talks about the region’s luxury goods market and vision for the future.

May 23, 2012 3:22 by

The luxury market of the Middle East, which earlier represented probably less than one percent of the global market, today represents nearly four percent, so when you compare the progress it has made, it is huge. And then came the economic slowdown, a period that has been quite interesting, because in many countries of the world there has been a real recession. But we didn’t have any recession here, only a slowdown. We were used to growth rates of 20 to 30 percent a year, and all of a sudden it was down to either minus two or two percent.
But in the luxury industry, we didn’t have any sustained slowdown in the GCC countries. Obviously, many other sectors were affected, but not luxury. And now there has been a strong rebound since 2010 in all of the key GCC markets, so I would say we are in a sector of activity that is developing rapidly.

How can fashion succeed in a market like this where both men and women wear traditional dresses. How does this work?
Firstly there are different aspects of luxury and luxury products. One is definitely ready to wear and the other, I would say, are the accessories. If you take a blank wall and put a color, or if you put a painting, it will immediately show. If you take a black dress and you put [with it] a nice shoe, a nice bag and a nice lipstick, it immediately grabs the eye.

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