Concern is growing about a slowdown in global economic growth, but one industry is confounding expectations: luxury goods. Overall, the luxury market grew five per cent in 2018 to an estimated €1.2 trillion globally, with positive performance across most segments1. As notable, however, is how digital technology is changing the luxury ecosystem – increasingly permeating luxury transactions and reframing expectations of the physical retail experience modifying luxury’s path to purchase.

In 2018, global sales of luxury cars dominated the luxury market and rose five per cent year on year, according to recent analysis by Bain&Co2. Luxury experiences also remained buoyant with luxury hospitality sales growth up five per cent, gourmet food and fine dining up six per cent and luxury cruises up seven per cent.

Personal luxury goods sales reached a record high of €260 billion, up six per cent. But while shoes and jewellery were the top luxury growth categories, gaining seven per cent each, followed by hand- bags and beauty, watches remained flat while apparel suffered lacklustre menswear sales.