What you need to know

Demand for jewellery and watches in the UK has increased; sales were up 2.9% in 2018 and growth is expected to be even stronger in 2019. Mintel estimates that the market will increase by 3.5% in 2019, bringing its value to £5.9 billion, from £5.7 billion in 2018. This value growth has largely been driven by the luxury end of the market, as customers are opting for high-end investment pieces rather than cheaper alternatives. In jewellery, the demi-fine market continues to take off, and there has been an increase in demand for 14-carat gold as a result. Younger customers are opting for demi-fine options as a more affordable and youthful alternative to ‘stuffy’ high-end options. This has paved the way for niche jewellery brands such as Maria Tash to really take off, leaving big brands struggling to keep up.

The watch market, on the other hand, is heavily reliant on the high-end brands, while mid-priced options are continuing to decrease in popularity. Despite the fact that very few people feel that a watch is a necessity, the category is enduring due to people purchasing expensive watches as statement pieces. However, this has meant that the lower-priced options are feeling the effects of innovations in the market such as smartwatches and fitness trackers.

Products covered in this Report

This Report examines the UK jewellery and watches retailing market for men and women aged 16 and over. The Report covers:

  • Precious metal jewellery, ie jewellery made with precious metals such as gold, silver, platinum, palladium and titanium.

  • Costume jewellery, ie jewellery made from non-precious metals.

  • Watches, including mechanical watches, quartz movement watches and a third type that combines a quartz movement with micro-mechanics for additional features.

  • Note that the market size does not include smartwatches; more information on this market is included in Mintel’s Wearable Technology – UK, November 2018 Report.

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