Luxury Institute News

October 10, 2013

Wealthy Travelers From China, Japan and Europe Rank Quality And Experience At Global Luxury Hotel Brands

(NEW YORK) October 10, 2013 – Wealthy travelers from Europe and Asia revealed their top luxury hotel picks in recent research conducted by the independent and objective New York-based Luxury Institute. Three new Luxury Brand Status Index (LBSI) reports examine the attitudes and preferences of affluent Chinese, Japanese, and European consumers as they relate to leading hotel brands.

On a 1-10 scale, wealthy respondents rated hotels on quality, exclusivity, social status, and self-enhancement. They also shared which brands are worth a luxury price tag, the hotels they would recommend, and their preferred brand for an upcoming stay.

New this year, the Luxury Institute asked consumers who recently visited a luxury hotel if their stay was for work, vacation, or both.

“Luxury hotels serve a dual purpose as destinations for both business and pleasure,” says Luxury Institute CEO Milton Pedraza. “Brands have an opportunity to deliver personalized experiences so guests will return for their next trip, regardless of the occasion.”

Affluent respondents ranked the following number of luxury hotel brands in the regions below:

Europe (U.K., Germany, France and Italy)

  • Brands rated: 31
  • Consumers surveyed: 1,516
  • Median annual HHI: £79,000 (U.K.), €69,000 (Germany), €63,000 (France), and €71,000 (Italy)
  • Median age: 47 (U.K.), 43 (Germany), 46 (France), and 42 (Italy)

China

  • Brands rated: 31
  • Consumers surveyed: 717
  • Median annual HHI: 2.5 million CNY
  • Median age: 32

Japan

  • Brands rated: 23
  • Consumers surveyed: 602
  • Median annual HHI: 20 million JPY
  • Median age: 51

To learn about the specific brands rated in each region, please contact Luxury Institute directly.

About Luxury Institute (www.LuxuryInstitute.com)
The Luxury Institute is the objective and independent global voice of the high net-worth consumer. The Institute conducts extensive and actionable research with wealthy consumers about their behaviors and attitudes on customer experience best practices. In addition, we work closely with top-tier luxury brands to successfully transform their organizational cultures into more profitable customer-centric enterprises. Our Luxury CRM Culture consulting process leverages our fact-based research and enables luxury brands to dramatically Outbehave as well as Outperform their competition. The Luxury Institute also operates LuxuryBoard.com, a membership-based online research portal, and the Luxury CRM Association, a membership organization dedicated to building customer-centric luxury enterprises.

September 30, 2013

Coach and Michael Kors and the Japanese Fashion Market

By Sarah Deschamps and Hiroshi Saito
Modern Tokyo Times
September 29, 2013

Michel Kors ventured into the competitive fashion market of Japan in 2009 and since this period this brand continues to consolidate. The handbag market is just one angle to the products sold by Michael Kors but this area alone is worth a staggering amount each year throughout Japan. Now it is becoming clear that inroads are being made in this area and other important segments of the fashion sector in the land of the rising sun.

Coach may be on the horizons of Michael Kors in Japan because this company is firmly established and highly desired. Indeed, the reputation of Coach is known internationally for being extremely creative and where vibrancy is maintained year after year. Therefore, with Coach being firmly established in Japan and with this nation ranking highly within the profits of this company, the impact of Michael Kors in the handbag market is extremely intriguing.

In the United States it was stated about Coach that their customer service is second to none. This angle is certainly important throughout Japan and noticeably in major cities like Tokyo and Osaka where the fashion market is enormous. According to the data of the Luxury Institute in America 25% of wealthy women had purchased a Coach bag. Equally powerful is that the same statistic was given for buying a new handbag in the next twelve months. No other company came close to Coach in America in other types of surveys.

Click the link to read the entire article which includes a quote from Milton Pedraza, CEO of Luxury Institute:
http://moderntokyotimes.com/2013/09/29/coach-and-michael-kors-and-the-japanese-fashion-market/

May 20, 2013

Richemont’s Asia focus drives full-year sales up 14pc

By Erin Shea
Luxury Daily
May 17, 2013

Richemont is attributing its full-year sales increase to demand in China and Asia-Pacific, contributions from currencies and exchange rates and the broad growth from its brands across all regions.

Luxury conglomerate Richemont reported a 14 percent increase in annual sales to approximately $13 billion in 2012, compared to last year’s sales of $11.4 billion.

Richemont also reported that its profits for the year are up 30 percent to $2.6 billion from $2 billion in the previous year, much of which can be attributed to the sales in Asia-Pacific. The conglomerate released its results May 16 for the fiscal year that ended March 31.

“The Chinese and the Asians have a very healthy appetite for jewelry,” said Milton Pedraza, CEO of The Luxury Institute, New York.

“I think that ready-to-wear products may be oversaturated [in Asia], and handbags may be oversaturated, so watches and jewelry tend to be valuable,” he said.

“There are some companies in luxury that continue to grow, despite the global economy.”

Mr. Pedraza is not affiliated with Richemont, but agreed to comment as an industry expert.

Richemont, which was not able to comment directly, owns a number of luxury brands including Vacheron Constantin, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Baume & Mercier, A. Lange & Söhne, Cartier, IWC, Piaget, Alfred Dunhill, Van Cleef & Arpels, Montblanc, Chloé and Roger Dubuis.

Asian expansion
Richemont attributes its sales results to an increased demand in China and Asia-Pacific, contributions from currencies and exchange rates and the broad growth from its brands across all regions.

The company said that it works on a long-term basis of benefiting from the prestige and heritage of its brands, which will continue in the future.

However in the short-term, Richemont said that economic troubles may impact consumer confidence in some markets. Overall, the conglomerate is cautiously optimistic about the future.

During this past fiscal year, Richemont reported that Asia-Pacific accounted for the majority of its sales, with 41 percent of the group’s total sales coming from that area. Hong Kong and mainland China are its two largest markets.

Europe, including the Middle East and Africa, was responsible for 36 percent of Richemont’s overall sales.The conglomerate says this area’s growth was a result of demands from tourists.The Americas region had a third consecutive year of double-digit growth. This year, it accounted for 15 percent of group sales.Compared to other regions, Asia-Pacific is the area that is leading Richemont’s growth.

“Asia-Pacific is still a vibrant part of the world and there are some companies that are doing well there,” Mr. Pedraza said.

“Some brands are doing a fantastic job in that area,” he said. “Richemont is doing a fantastic job.”

Retail v. wholesale
Another aspect responsible for Richemont’s growth is its individual brands’ focus on retail over wholesale.

Cartier boutique

For the Asia Pacific and Europe, Richemont reports that its brand’s own boutiques had the highest growth rates.

In Asia, the brand boutiques had higher sales growth than the company’s wholesale partners. This is in part due to the expansion of the boutiques in the region.

“Richemont has set out over the last few years to try to keep its own distribution,” Mr. Pedraza said.

“Retail is outselling wholesale, which can help a company grow faster,” he said. “You can have faster growth when you are de-emphasizing wholesale and emphasizing retail.

“Most luxury brands want to control their own distribution. Watch brands tend to be more retail-oriented.”

http://www.luxurydaily.com/richemont-sales-up-14pc-in-2012/

November 29, 2012

Wealthy Shoppers Reveal Spending Plans, Attitudes On Global Luxury Industry

(NEW YORK) November 29, 2012 – Wealthy shoppers from seven global luxury markets share opinions and observations on issues confronting providers of high-end goods and services in the new 2012 State Of The Luxury Industry Global Trends survey from the independent and objective New York-based Luxury Institute.  Respondents are among the top 10% of earners in the U.S., United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, China and Japan, with minimum income of $150,000 in the U.S.

Despite an economic slowdown and a crackdown on conspicuous consumption, 43% of wealthy Chinese consumers still plan to spend more on luxury products in the coming year. This varies dramatically from the 10% of Japanese and 9% of American consumers who say they’ll boost luxury spending, while in Germany and Italy, where only 5% of wealthy shoppers plan to spend more.

Indicative of strength in U.S. luxury retail, wealthy Americans plan to increase spending in all  surveyed luxury categories compared to last year. Notable areas where recoveries are underway: ready-to-wear , jewelry, and private jet travel. Yachting also has the wind at its back, with 22% of U.S. consumers planning to spend more on luxury boating in 2012.

Everywhere except for Japan, discounting has enhanced luxury goods’ appeal and stimulated spending.  Wealthy Chinese (59%) and Italian (53%) shoppers are most likely to say that discounting has improved their view of luxury and prompted greater expenditures.

“Product differentiation and exceptional service are what keep luxury relevant,” says Luxury Institute CEO Milton Pedraza. “Especially in an uncertain economy, firms need to give wealthy shoppers reasons to buy more.”

About the Luxury Institute (www.LuxuryInstitute.com)
The Luxury Institute is the objective and independent global voice of the high net-worth consumer. The Institute conducts extensive and actionable research with wealthy consumers about their behaviors and attitudes on customer experience best practices. In addition, we work closely with top-tier luxury brands to successfully transform their organizational cultures into more profitable customer-centric enterprises. Our Luxury CRM Culture consulting process leverages our fact-based research and enables luxury brands to dramatically Outbehave as well as Outperform their competition. The Luxury Institute also operates LuxuryBoard.com, a membership-based online research portal, and the Luxury CRM Association, a membership organization dedicated to building customer-centric luxury enterprises.

September 12, 2012

In Asian Luxury Hotels, Wealthy Chinese Love Lodging With Hyatt And Marriot, But Japan Prefers Putting On the Ritz

(NEW YORK) September 12, 2012 – U.S. hotel operators prove popular among wealthy travelers in Asia’s two biggest markets, according to two new Luxury Brand Status Index (LBSI) surveys of affluent Chinese and Japanese by the independent and objective New York-based Luxury Institute. Japanese travelers earning at least 15 million yen per year ($190,000) evaluated 20 luxury hotel brands, and Chinese consumers with minimum annual income of one million yuan ($157,000) considered 26 luxury-lodging names.

Wealthy respondents rated hotels 1-10 on criteria including quality of accommodations, exclusivity, degree of status enhancement and ability to deliver special guest experiences.  They also indicated which hotel brands they planned to stay with this year, and whether they’re willing to pay premium prices or to recommend a brand to people close to them.

In China, St. Regis (8.41) earns the highest LBSI score, but the JW Marriott (36%) and Grand Hyatt (34%) were most frequently visited in the past year by wealthy Chinese travelers and are the two hotels where they plan to stay next. Along with InterContinental, Marriott and Hyatt are also the two most likely brands to receive favorable recommendations from wealthy Chinese travelers.

In Japan, Ritz-Carlton ranks at the top for both popularity and prestige. Ritz earns the second-highest (7.62) LBSI score, just behind Peninsula Hotels (7.66), but it is deemed the hotel most worthy of a price premium.  Ritz-Carlton is also the most popular choice for the next hotel visit.

“Luxury hotels don’t achieve consistently superior ratings by accident,” says Luxury Institute CEO Milton Pedraza. “Standards, systems and training underpin excellence in any service business, especially luxury.”

About the Luxury Institute (www.LuxuryInstitute.com)
The Luxury Institute is the objective and independent global voice of the high net-worth consumer. The Institute conducts extensive and actionable research with wealthy consumers about their behaviors and attitudes on customer experience best practices. In addition, we work closely with top-tier luxury brands to successfully transform their organizational cultures into more profitable customer-centric enterprises. Our Luxury CRM Culture consulting process leverages our fact-based research and enables luxury brands to dramatically Outbehave as well as Outperform their competition. The Luxury Institute also operates LuxuryBoard.com, a membership-based online research portal, and the Luxury CRM Association, a membership organization dedicated to building customer-centric luxury enterprises.

September 7, 2012

Rolls-Royce targets blooming Asia-Pacific market in boutique expansion

British automaker Rolls-Royce Motor Cars is keeping its brand top-of-mind with trend-savvy, affluent consumers in Thailand through a new boutique experience set to open in the fourth quarter of this year.

The new Rolls-Royce Central Bangkok boutique will be the first of its kind in Asia. The automaker has additional plans expand its presence in Thailand due to strong interest from consumers in the emerging market, which seems to welcome status brands with open arms, experts say.

“Rolls-Royce understands that Asia has a lot more opportunities than just China,” said Milton Pedraza, CEO of the Luxury Institute, New York. “It has large populations that are growing in their economic and demographic profiles.

“The slowdown in China, while it is still a wonderful opportunity, is causing the brand to move further out,” he said. “Now you have to open your eyes a little wider, and you will find out that Asia is much bigger than China with a tremendous amount of growth opportunity.”

Click the link to read the entire article which includes quotes from Milton Pedraza, CEO of Luxury Institute: http://www.luxurydaily.com/rolls-royce-targets-blooming-asia-pacific-market-in-boutique-expansion/

June 18, 2011

Wealthy Consumers From China And Japan Rank Luxury Brands In Four Categories; Lots Of Love In Asia for Chanel, Hermès and European Stalwarts

(NEW YORK) June 17, 2011 – A new series of Luxury Brands Status Index (LBSI) surveys from the independent and objective New York City-based Luxury Institute reveals firsthand impressions and rankings of dozens of luxury brands by high net-worth consumers from Japan and China. Respondents were 21 years of age and older, earning the equivalent of at least $185,000 per year—one million Chinese renminbi or 15 million Japanese yen.

Wealthy Japanese and Chinese shoppers rated each brand on quality, exclusivity, social status and overall ownership experience. Also considered were price worthiness, willingness to recommend the brand and likelihood of purchase.

Based on overall LBSI scores, the top luxury brands rank as follows:

  • Hotels
    • China: Fairmont Hotels & Resorts; JW Marriott; Aman Resorts
    • Japan: Ritz-Carlton; Orient-Express Hotels; Aman Resorts
  • Handbags
    • China: Chanel; Louis Vuitton; Dior
    • Japan: Hermès; Chanel; Louis Vuitton
  • Women’s Fashion
    • China: Chanel; Dior; Hermès
    • Japan: Hermès; Chanel; Louis Vuitton
  • Men’s Fashion
    • China: Giorgio Armani; Versace; Brioni
    • Japan: Hermès; Louis Vuitton; Burberry

“European luxury brands are warmly received by wealthy shoppers throughout Asia,” says Milton Pedraza, CEO of the Luxury Institute.  “Japan’s market is more mature and surprisingly resilient so far in the wake of the tsunami and quake, while growth stays red hot in China.  Firms need to know where they
rank.”

For greater details on brand rankings in each category and other purchase considerations of wealthy Japanese and Chinese consumers, visit LuxuryInstitute.com.

About Luxury Institute (www.LuxuryInstitute.com)

The Luxury Institute is the objective and independent global voice of the high
net-worth consumer. The Institute conducts extensive and actionable research
with wealthy consumers about their behaviors and attitudes on customer
experience best practices. In addition, we work closely with top-tier luxury
brands to successfully transform their organizational cultures into more
profitable customer-centric enterprises. Our Luxury CRM Culture consulting
process leverages our fact-based research and enables luxury brands to
dramatically Outbehave as well as Outperform their competition. The Luxury Institute also operates LuxuryBoard.com, a membership-based online research portal, and the Luxury CRM Association, a membership organization dedicated to building customer-centric luxury enterprises.

For Further Information, Please Contact:
The Luxury Institute, LLC
Martin Swanson
Vice President
(914) 909-6350
mswanson@luxuryinstitute.com

June 2, 2010

News Release: Japanese High Net-Worth Consumers Rate the “Best of the Best” Luxury Brands in Five Fashion Categories

(NEW YORK) June 2, 2010 – The objective and independent New York City-based Luxury Institute reported today the results of the “Best of the Best” luxury fashion brands in Japan based on the 2010 Luxury Brand Status Index (LBSI) survey. This survey identifies the top brands that deliver true luxury based solely on the unbiased ratings of wealthy Japanese consumers. The following five luxury categories were rated: Women’s Fashion, Women’s Shoes, Women’s Handbags, Men’s Fashion, and Men’s Shoes.

The LBSI asks high net-worth consumers to rate luxury brands by category across four equally weighted components: Consistently Superior Quality, Uniqueness and Exclusivity, Making the Customer Feel Special Across the Entire Experience and Being Consumed by People Who Are Admired and Respected. 

The “Best of the Best” are: (LBSI score out of 10)

Women’s Fashion (Ready-to-wear)

  • o Hermes-7.28
  • o Chanel-7.27
  • o Giorgio Armani-6.80

Women’s Handbags

  • o Hermes-7.77
  • o Chanel-7.06
  • o Louis Vuitton-7.01

Women’s Shoes

  • o Christian Louboutin-7.39
  • o Hermes-7.20
  • o Ferragamo-7.18

Men’s Fashion (Ready-to-wear)

  • o Ermenegildo Zegna- 7.17
  • o Hermes-7.01
  • o Giorgio Armani-6.89 

Men’s Shoes

  • o John Lobb-7.34
  • o Testoni-7.32
  • o Ferragamo-7.11

“Japan may be a challenging market for luxury, but it is still a huge market compared to most other geographies”, said Milton Pedraza, CEO of the Luxury Institute. “We see major efforts on the part of our luxury brand clients to differentiate themselves by dramatically out-behaving their competition rather than merely outperforming on products. Extraordinary customer experiences will be the drivers of luxury success in Japan’s large, but stagnant market”

The proprietary Luxury Brand Status Index (LBSI) survey is the only unbiased measure of the prestige of leading brands among wealthy Japanese. A national sample of 600 wealthy Japanese consumers, half male/half female, with a minimum household income of 15 million Yen (approximately $165k) was surveyed online. Males rated only the men’s categories and females rated only the women’s categories.

About the Luxury Institute

The Luxury Institute is the uniquely independent and impartial ratings, research and Luxury CRM consulting institution that is the trusted and respected voice of the high net-worth consumer. The Institute provides a portfolio of proprietary publications, research and consulting services that guide and educate high net-worth individuals and the companies that cater to them on leading edge trends, high net-worth consumer rankings and ratings of luxury brands, and best practices. The Luxury Institute also operates LuxuryBoard.com, the world’s first global, membership-based online community for luxury goods and services executives, professionals and entrepreneurs.

Contact:
The Luxury Institute, LLC
Martin Swanson
Vice President Business Development
(914) 909-6350
mswanson@luxuryinstitute.com

June 4, 2009

Japanese High Net-Worth Consumers Rank the “Best of the Best” Luxury Brands in Six Categories

(NEW YORK) June 4, 2009 – The Luxury Institute reported today the results of the “Best of the Best” luxury brands in Japan based on the 2009 Luxury Brand Status Index (LBSI) survey, which identifies the top brands that deliver true luxury based solely on the unbiased ratings of wealthy Japanese consumers. The following six luxury categories were rated: Women’s Fashion (29 brands), Women’s Shoes (18 brands), Handbags (30 brands), Men’s Fashion (22 brands), Men’s Shoes (18 brands) and Automobiles (20 brands). 

The LBSI asks high net-worth consumers to rate luxury brands by category across four equally weighted components: Consistently Superior Quality, Uniqueness and Exclusivity, Making the Customer Feel Special Across the Entire Experience and Being Consumed by People Who Are Admired and Respected.

Which luxury providers deliver the best combination of quality, exclusivity, customer experience and peer prestige in Japan?

The “Best of the Best” are: (LBSI score out of 10)

  • Women’s Fashion
  • Hermes- 7.38
  • Chanel- 7.20
  • Louis Vuitton- 7.01
     
  • Women’s Shoes
  • Manolo Blahnik- 8.18
  • Jimmy Choo- 7.58
  • Hermes- 7.45
     
  • Handbags
  • Hermes- 7.76
  • Louis Vuitton- 7.24
  • Chanel- 7.20
  • Men’s Fashion
  • Ermenegildo Zegna- 7.08
  • Giorgio Armani- 6.97
  • Louis Vuitton- 6.71
  • Men’s Shoes
  • Salvatore Ferragamo- 6.82
  • Versace- 6.59
  • Giorgio Armani- 6.38
  • Automobiles
  • Mercedes-Benz- 7.47
  • Porsche- 7.21
  • Lexus- 6.99

 “Japan continues to be a critical market for luxury due to its highly discerning and still affluent consumers,” said Milton Pedraza, CEO of the Luxury Institute. “The Luxury Institute conducts more surveys globally with wealthy consumers than all other entities in the world combined, and we also clearly see that luxury is no longer ‘back to basics’ .While some are busy predicting the death of luxury around the developed world, we predict that luxury will regain its luster, and with a vengeance, when truly wealthy consumers fatten their wallets again and can focus on acquiring the best. It is a historical fact that luxury is cyclical and dramatically outperforms in up cycles and dramatically underperforms in down cycles. We predict that savvy Japanese wealthy consumers will not be fooled again by faux luxury brands.” 

The proprietary Luxury Brand Status Index (LBSI) survey is the only unbiased measure of the prestige of leading brands among wealthy Americans. A national sample of 600 wealthy Japanese consumers, with an average household income of ¥50,000,000 Japanese Yen (or $525,000 US Dollars) was surveyed online. 

About the Luxury Institute (www.LuxuryInstitute.com)

The Luxury Institute is the uniquely independent and impartial ratings and research institution that is the trusted and respected voice of the high net-worth consumer. The Institute provides a portfolio of proprietary publications and research and consulting services that guides and educates high net-worth individuals and the companies that cater to them on leading edge trends, high net-worth consumer rankings and ratings of luxury brands, and best practices. The Luxury Institute also operates the LuxuryBoard.com (www.LuxuryBoard.com), the world’s first global, membership-based online community for luxury goods and services executives, professionals and entrepreneurs.

For Further Information, Please Contact:

The Luxury Institute, LLC
Martin Swanson
Business Development
Phone: (914) 909-6350
E-mail: mswanson@luxuryinstitute.com