Retailers across most of the UK grappled with fewer people coming into their shops, but Selfridges on London’s Oxford Street does not perform like the rest of the market, and remains a magnet for shoppers in the capital and the wider world.
The Wonder Room in Selfridges, run by The Watch Gallery, reopened half of its space with a luxurious makeover in December. The business did not miss a minute of trading, with the entire upgrade taking place at night when the department store was closed.
The second phase of the renovation is already underway and The Watch Gallery chairman David Coleridge (pictured) told WatchPro he expects it to be completed by January 23.
When finished, The Watch Gallery space will have increased by 30% within Selfridges.
The Watch Gallery, which has almost all of its business in London, has enjoyed a record year, driven by its prime locations and line up of luxury brands attracting domestic and overseas shoppers snapping up bargains in the post-Brexit era.
The slump in the value of the pound made luxury watches in the UK around 25% cheaper than other Western markets, although most brands, excluding Swatch Group brands, have now raised prices in the UK to restore price parity with other countries.
For the fourth quarter of the year, which runs from November to January, The Watch Gallery sales are running 32% up on the same period last year. November was a particularly strong month, but the key Christmas month of December saw year-on-year growth of 19%, Mr Coleridge revealed today.
The Watch Gallery has taken price rises imposed by the brands in its stride, with Mr Coleridge saying that it has increased average transaction values. “Crudely, the higher the price point the better the sales,” he says.