Chalhoub focusing on sustainable development
Luxury and sustainability are no longer two separate notions. In its latest study, "Global Powers of Luxury Goods 2015", Deloitte has highlighted that labels are increasingly investing in this area to be accountable to the young consumers of today.
It is a major theme that was chosen this year by Chalhoub for its third white paper created by its Strategy and Innovation division called "‘Luxury in the Gulf: A Sustainable Future?".
The first two white papers published in 2013 and 2014 were focused on the dynamics of luxury consumerism in the region and consumer profiles. In this third volume, the leading distributor of fashion brands in the Middle East studies the role of sustainable development in the luxury sector in this region.
It notably cites a survey according to which 65% well-off consumers admit that they don't take sustainability into account when purchasing a luxury good. Nevertheless, 85% of the people questioned expect the luxury industry to partake in sustainable practices in view of being proactive.
Top quality, the most precious materials and artisanal excellence remain the fundamental elements of the luxury sector for the Middle Eastern customer. But also important in the priorities of this industry is a commitment to sustainable development and the implementation of the best practices in this domain in the region.
The study focuses on four major chapters: social values intrinsic to the Gulf populations, the importance of family business, the challenges the region is confronted with and how it meets them, and the evolution of mentalities.
Luxury in the Middle East is still largely characterised by a tendency towards unbridled consumption on the part of consumers. The average spending on clothing, fashion accessories, beauty products and gifts amounts to 2,400 dollars per month, one of the highest in the world.
As for the youth of the Emirates, they spend six times more than youth elsewhere in the world, says the report.
Nevertheless, a new consumer profile is emerging, a one that is slightly taking its distance from the material world and favouring the experience that comes with purchasing a luxury product, looking for a tie to its history and the brand's heritage as well as searching to understand how the product is produced.
Another emerging profile is the consumer that purchases luxury products not to show them off but as an expression of themselves. For both of these two new profiles, sustainability is a fundamental element.
The Chalhoub group itself has already been committed to idea for several years, even creating a specific department for it in 2009. It also plans to develop a new store concept following a series of sustainability standards.
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