The Chinese Luxury Watch Market Continues to Grow, as Reported in the World Luxury Index™ China Watches

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Digital Luxury Group, publisher of the WorldWatchReport™ and a leading luxury intelligence company, released results of its World Luxury Index™ China: Watches, indicating that Chinese interest for luxury watches remains strong despite a macroeconomic slowdown.

The World Luxury Index™ China: Watches

The World Luxury Index™ China: Watches

"Interest [for luxury watches in China] continues to grow, but there are indicators that the purchase cycle has slowed,” indicates Florent Bondoux, Head of Strategy and Intelligence at Digital Luxury Group.

Digital Luxury Group (DLG), publisher of the WorldWatchReport™, in a long-time partnership with Europa Star, a leading watch magazine published since 1927, and Luxury Society, the world’s largest community of luxury executives, unveils an analysis of the most sought-after luxury watch brands in China.

DLG research analysts, with the support of the Europa Star and Luxury Society teams, uncovered a number of interesting findings:

1.    Chinese interest for luxury watches is growing
There is no doubt that the Chinese are still passionate about watches. The analysis of 65 international watch brands shows that every category of luxury watches from “prestige” to “haute horlogerie” has seen an increase in interest comparing the first half of 2012 to the same time period in 2011, with a near 40% increase in aggregate searches. This shows that the attention expressed for luxury watches in China remains strong despite the reported macroeconomic slowdown and the economic uncertainty linked to the political changes.

“The interest continues to grow, but there are indicators that the purchase cycle has slowed,” indicates Florent Bondoux, Head of Strategy and Intelligence at DLG.

2.    The big players get bigger
In an immature market where awareness of smaller brands is yet to be developed, the lucky winners enjoy a more prevailing dominance. Out of 65 brands analyzed, the top ten most-searched luxury watch brands (Omega, Rolex, Longines, Cartier, Rado, Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin, IWC, Piaget, Chanel) represent nearly 80% of the search market. Compared to a mature market like France, where the top ten represent 64%, this is quite a difference.

“The three brands that have increased the most in search volume year-over-year (Rolex, Omega, and Cartier) are also the brands that represent the biggest slice of search market share,” adds Bondoux.

3.    Chinese consumers are becoming more educated and sophisticated
When looking at the way consumers (or would-be consumers) search for luxury watches, it is noted that for the first time this year style-related searches (such as “men’s watch” or “classic style”) have surpassed price-related searches. This is the cause of several factors, from a more educated consumer who is now deciphering between a brand’s different models, to gift-purchase related searches which tend to skew more generic.

“This more sophisticated and educated consumer marks an opportunity for brands to better localize to the needs and desires of the Chinese audience,” concludes Shanghai-based Pablo Mauron, DLG China’s General Manager.

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A free version of the report is available for download at: http://www.dlgr.com/chinawatches. For more in-depth analysis on the luxury watch market in China, as well as 19 other international markets, the 2013 WorldWatchReport™ is available for pre-order.

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About the World Luxury Index™
This report is part of the World Luxury Index™, an international ranking and analysis of the most searched-for brands within the luxury industry. Covering over 400 brands within six key segments (fashion, beauty, jewelry, cars, watches, and hospitality) in ten international luxury markets, the World Luxury Index provides insights on the unbiased search inputs coming from global luxury consumers in the world’s top search engines (Google, Bing, Baidu, Yandex). The result is a one-of-a-kind benchmark of the brands capturing the attention of luxury-minded consumers around the world.

About Digital Luxury Group
With offices in New York, Geneva, and Shanghai, Digital Luxury Group (DLG) is the first international company dedicated exclusively to luxury industry market intelligence as well as the design and implementation of digital communication strategies for the luxury brands. For more information: http://www.digital-luxury.com

About Europa Star
Published without a break since 1927, Europa Star has developed a unique readership within the international watch community. Europa Star’s magazines are circulated by personal mail over the five continents to more than 160 countries and delivered directly to the doors of the decision makers in the global watch industry. http://www.europastar.com

About Luxury Society
Luxury Society is the world's most influential online community of top luxury executives. Based in Paris, with members in more than 150 countries, Luxury Society informs and connects CEOs, managers, journalists, consultants, designers and analysts from across the luxury industry. For more information: http://www.luxurysociety.com

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