World Luxury Association Names “Most Valuable” Luxury Brands

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Beijing—It seems appropriate that the World Luxury Association (WLA), a  non-profit luxury brands research and management organization, should announce its “World’s Top 100 Most Valuable Luxury Brands” here.

The event, which honors the Top 100 luxury brands in fashion, beauty, jewelry, watches, cosmetics, cars, aircraft, yachts, liquor, resorts and “innovation” in what some now call the “Academy Awards” of luxurygoods, was big news in China.

And no wonder. According to the WLA’s own report, China will become the world’s largest luxurygoods market this year, representing nearly a third of  the global market. Europe accounts for 18% and the United States, 14%.

Report: China to Become Largest Luxurygoods Market in 2012

Sales of luxurygoods–excluding premium private jets, yachts and vehicles–this year in China are forecast to hit $14.6 billion, a 36% year-on-year rise.

“Some 200 million well-heeled consumers with sybaritic taste are increasing consumption by at least 15% annually,” said Michael Ouyang, chief executive of WLA China.

The awards ceremony in Beijing

Several factors are accelerating China’s share, WLA reported, including the continued appreciation of Chinese currency, the depreciation of the euro and a big increase in Chinese travelers to Europe that’s expected this year.

All told, WLA said total consumption of luxurygoods is expected to reach a record high of 59 billion euros.

The WLA’s “The Most Valuable Luxury Top 100” list is based upon a luxury brand’s influence on a global scale, market share, consumer feedback and other composite scores.

While there are really no surprises on the list, it’s interesting to note that only one Chinese brand made the list, Sun Valley Icewine which was named as one of the top 10 most innovative brands. Shang Xia, the Hermès-owned Chinese luxury brand, also was cited as one of the top 10 most innovative brands.

WLA-World’s TOP 10 Fashion Brands:

Louis Vuitton
Christian Dior
Giorgio Armani
Ermenegildo Zegna

WLA-TOP 10 Jewelry Brands:

Van Cleef & Arpels
Harry Winston
Tiffany & Co.

WLA-Top 10 Watch Brands:

Patek Philippe
Vacheron Constantin
Jaeger-Le Coultre
Audemars Piguet
Franck Muller

For those who are interested—or can afford them—other top brands included Chanel (cosmetics), Gulfstream (aircraft), Rolls Royce (autos), and Harley Davidson, (innovation).