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Luxury sales stagnant in 2010

Al Fahim Holdings chief exec sees 2010 sales matching 2009 figures despite stonger start to year.

June 2, 2010 8:55 by

Al Fahim Holdings expects sales in the region’s luxury sector for 2010 to broadly match 2009 levels, reports Reuters.

2009 sales were down 40 percent, says the report, and what business there was was propped up by Gulf Arabs buyers. Chief Executive Mohammed al-Fahim told the news agency that the sales trend has improved slightly, however, with number just 25 percent down. But he wasn’t confident that levels could be maintained.

“Overall the luxury high-end brands are suffering, (but) a little less than last year,” he told Reuters. “The trend in 2010 for those brands is similar to 2009, with the second quarter always tougher than the first.”

Al Fahim Holdings owns cosmetics and fragrances chain Paris Gallery, which has 80 outlets across the Middle East, as well as franchises for brands including Ferrari, Burberry, Cartier, and Roberto Cavalli in 20 stores in the Gulf.

“People are more careful about what they buy,” said Fahim. “Those people who have high disposable income are not cutting on buying high-end brands, but those in the middle class (segment) … are more careful.”

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