London has cemented itself as one of the world’s top shopping destinations due to its famous designer stores and luxury image. Retail consultants Conlumino predicted that the UK will take over from France and Italy to become the largest luxury goods market in Europe by 2018. In fact, London now ranks above cities famed for their shopping opportunities such as Paris, Hong Kong and Dubai.
Some of the UK’s most prestigious and hugely popular brands include Burberry, Mulberry and Barbour. These stores attract shoppers from all over the world and many are based in the capital, ensuring serious shopaholics always flocks to the city when they are in need of something new.
The luxury British car industry is also thriving at the moment, with Rolls Royce and Aston Martin rolling cars out of their garages by the thousands. As more people come to the UK to shop, luxury car sales numbers are increasing and export figures have risen dramatically over the last few years. Rolls Royce production was up by 12% in 2014 as sales in China became increasingly popular (260% increase since 2009).
In fact, 18.5% of all of the cars that are built in the UK are now destined to go to China and the value of these cars has doubled in the last decade. By 2018, export sales look set to increase even further and many predict that production records will be broken by 2017, as Bentley, Aston Martin and Rolls Royce are all busy smashing existing records with the future looking even more promising.
China is playing a large role in the popularity of exports from the UK, as they have a passion for British luxury goods. A survey was recently conducted asking consumers in Beijing and Shanghai why they travelled thousands of miles to visit stores like House of Fraser, Harvey Nichols and Harrods and the fact that they love all things British was cited as the primary reason.
In 2013, Burberry reported that their annual revenues had hit £2 billion and they also cited sales to the Chinese market as one of the main reasons for their success, as sales to China increase 20% every year. The fashion retailed plans to open a further eight more stores in the UK this year, in an attempt to keep up with the supply and demand currently placed on the popular luxury brand. Sales of Jaguar Land Rover cars were also up in China in 2014 by a whopping 39%, proving just why they are the UK’s leading manufacturer of premium luxury vehicles.
The overall branding of Britain looks set to be improved in 2015, as it promises to be a strong year from luxury brands. This is important to employment numbers in the country as well as the economy and it’s certainly an exciting time to be part of the United Kingdom.