The 2013 edition of the Altagamma Observatory, the annual meeting providing a snapshot of the world luxury lifestyle industry, has kicked off this year with the round table conference "Milan and creative excellence", while presenting the organization's own forecasts and experts' projections on the evolution of the global luxury market.
While opening the conference Andrea Illy, Chairman of the Altagamma Foundation explained: "In order to stand up to global competition and considering the opportunity that Expo 2015 will represent for Milan and Italy, Italian high-end companies must seek to promote their own creative, cultural and entrepreneurial heritage." For this the association will launch a brand for Milan as the ambassador of Italy's creative heritage, inspired by Altagamma, Camera della Moda, Cosmit (The organization behind Milan Design Week) and the Milan City authorities.
During the event, for the first time some Italian ambassadors of beauty, art and culture have been made honorary members of the Altagamma Foundation International Honorary Council. They are Gillo Dorfles, philosopher and art critic, Gualtiero Marchesi, the leading Italian chef of international renown, and from abroad, Michael Ward, Managing Director of Harrods, and Lusink Oger, and CEO of Dutch fashion retailer OGER.
The conference continued with the customary presentation of comprehensive research on luxury segment trends and forecasts.
According to Altagamma Consensus, the global market expects to register a +5% increase in luxury goods consumption by end 2014. The strongest growth will be registered by the Middle East (+10%) and Asia (+10%), Latin America (+7%) and the rest of the World (+8%). Europe will also grow 4% and Northern America 5%.
Another study, the Monitor Altagamma research carried ahead by Bain & Co. and Altagamma, looked at the development of the luxury market in 2013. According to this study, the overall worldwide luxury goods spending will grow by 2% to €217 billion (+6% not considering value rate exchange) when compared to results of 2012.
Reversing the trend of recent years, it has been observed that the Americas region surpasses China as luxury goods growth leader. This has been propelled by Chinese tourism and new store openings. Reversing the trends of past years the Americas spending market areas are estimated to grow in 2013 by 4% compared with 2012, surpassing the estimated 2.5% growth rate for China, even though China's potential growth remains very high.
Moreover Europe will see a 2% growth and Japan a -12% decline. Among high-potential growth areas they also pointed out Southeast Asia (Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam and Thailand) registered a +11% growth, and Africa (Angola, Nigeria, Morocco and South Africa) showed a +11% growth for 2013.
A study presented by Global Blue observed that the European tax free shopping represents a market worth €39 billion. The growth reported in all European countries in the period January-September 2013 registered a +13% despite the fall of purchases by visitors from Japan (-29%) and Brazil (-6%). In terms of best selling countries the best performers were UK (+24%), Italy (+16%), France (+12%) and Germany (+4%). By end 2014 European tax free shopping expects to register a +14% growth.