London loses ground as growth engine for British watch industry


WatchPro is leaving its London headquarters for a visit to Pragnell’s newly extended flagship in Stratford-Upon-Avon today and it seems we are not alone in heading North. Watch shoppers, according to GfK’s retail analysis for May, are also increasingly comfortable spending outside the capital.

The value of sales for all watches dipped by 11.1% in London in May, compared to the same month in 2018, while sales in the rest of Great Britain rose by 9.9%.


It is the third month in a row in which London growth has been lower than growth in the rest of the country. Growth rates have been similar since the beginning of 2018.



The decline in sales for watches priced at under £1000 continues. The £500-£1000 price point is suffering most, with the value of sales down 16.7% in May, and the average of all price points under £500 was down over 10%.

Overall, the value of sales for watches across all price points was down just 0.6% thanks again to the luxury end of the market where sales for watches priced at over £1000 rose by 3.2%.



The value of online sales continues to fall — down in May by 1.1% — but this may be down the fact that GfK does not monitor sales for most direct to consumer sales by brands. The inference is that multibrand watch retailers are seeing little or no growth online.


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