Experts focus on ME luxury industry
Dubai, May 21, 2008
Over 70 experts representing luxury brands gathered yesterday (May 20) in Dubai for an inaugural roundtable discussion organised by The Luxury Marketing Council.
This is the first event of the Council’s Dubai Chapter, which was formed in early 2008. The discussion examined the evolving trends in luxury purchasing and spend patterns of the affluent in the Middle East, with a view to identifying growth opportunities for the premium goods and services sector.
The event was held at the Burj Al Arab and hosted by the council’s founding member American Express Middle East and North Africa.
This industry discussion serves as a networking platform for premium brands across key sectors in the luxury industry to capitalise on spend trends within the region.
“Dubai is today a global hub for luxury. Benefiting from the rising oil prices and diversified economy, the emirate and the wider region is clearly showing impressive growth in the number of high net worth individuals,” said CEO of American Express Middle East & North Africa Trevor Stokes.
“Despite the global downturn in financial markets, the affluent customer in the Middle East has been resilient. It is expected that there will be over 500,000 dollar millionaires in the Middle East by end 2010.”
“We are also witnessing a rapid rise of mass affluence in the region. Luxury is becoming more accessible. Old luxury was about the attributes, qualities and features of the product and much of its appeal was derived from status and prestige. Today’s new luxury is less about worth and more about value; less about exclusivity and more about experience,” said senior director of marketing at American Express Middle East and North Africa Premal Patel.
Patel added that strengthening customer engagement remains the key challenge for luxury brands in the UAE to maintain their leadership and to cater to new segments.
“As discussed today, members of the Council will be gearing up to bring the personal element into everything we do: innovating through new technology, techniques, processes and practices. We are bound to see a more prolific rise in the luxury market of the UAE,” said Patel. – TradeArabia News Service