British luxury is worth £32bn to the UK economy
Luxury is fast becoming an important contributor to the British economy. In 2013, sales from British luxury industries reached £32.2bn, or 2.2% of the country's GDP.
According to the report, from international consultancy Frontier Economics, the British luxury sector will continue to grow rapidly in the medium term. It forecasts the value of sales for 2019 to reach around £51.1bn, with the industry set to employ 158,000 people.
The report was commissioned by Walpole, which is the alliance of British luxury brands, and defined luxury according to 12 classifications that "capture the range of activities across the sector." Among them are designer apparel and footwear, fine wines and spirits, luxury accessories, luxury jewellery and timepieces, high-end beauty and personal care and high-end car manufacturing.
The UK luxury industries are export-friendly: 78% of production, in value terms, is destined for overseas markets. In 2013, the luxury industries accounted for around 4.3% of total UK merchandise exports.
Michelle Emmerson, CEO Walpole, commented: “We are delighted by the findings of the Frontier Economics report, which Walpole commissioned, revealing the truly significant value of the British luxury industry and its contribution to the UK economy. With well over half the produce destined for overseas markets over the year, we are proud that the British luxury industry pioneers as an export-orientated sector. We are thrilled to sit at the heart of an industry so valuable to the economy, and with such a promising growth trajectory."
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