The jewellery and watch industry was worth £5.7 billion in 2018, and is anticipated to rise to £5.9 billion in 2019, according to new research from Mintel.
According to Mintel’s upcoming Jewellery and Watches Retailing UK 2019 report, demand for jewellery and watches in the UK has remained robust, with sales reaching £5.7 billion in 2018, up 2.9% from 2017.
The market is expected to show even stronger growth in 2019, rising an estimated 3.5% to £5.9 billion.
Mintel’s report also demonstrates that sustainability and ethics are top of mind for 55% of UK jewellery buyers who say it’s important for them that the jewellery and watches they purchase are made ethically.
Chana Baram, retail analyst at Mintel said: “While many UK high-street fashion retailers are facing very public struggles, demand for jewellery and watches in the UK has remained robust and is expected to show even stronger growth in 2019.
“Demand for high jewellery has been a driver of this growth, as customers have moved away from cheaper branded jewellery and are looking for keepsakes and investment pieces.
“Meanwhile, there is an increased desire from younger consumers for bespoke jewellery pieces as well as a continued interest in the demi-fine category – which is more accessible and youthful than fine jewellery.
“In addition, sustainability and diversity have become top of mind for consumers, so jewellery brands and retailers have an opportunity to put ethical values at the core of their business.”
Simon Forrester, chief executive at the National Association of Jewellers said: “We are pleased to see that Mintel’s data shows growth, but also important we understand exactly where that growth is given continuing tough trading conditions, particularly on the high street.
“As the industry association for the UK jewellery trade, we’re determined to increase opportunities for more people to buy more jewellery, more often, whether a small treat or a long-term investment piece.
“As a collective, the more informed we are about who is buying and why, means we can all work together to inspire and educate returning customers as well as attract new ones.”
Katie Morris, events director at International Jewellery London (IJL), where the research was released, said: “It is fantastic to see success thriving in the Watch and Jewellery sector, while the industry continues to innovate to become more sustainable.
“For IJL this is one of our biggest years yet, with more exhibitors, retailers and buyers attending from the UK and internationally, including from China, Canada and Middle East.”