Bain x ECCIA report

European luxury sector valued at €800 billion

Walpole is in Brussels this week with fellow European Cultural and Creative Industries Alliance (ECCIA) members and Bain & Company at a presentation to the European parliament of a new study examining the contribution of the luxury and high-end sectors to the European economy and culture. The study reveals that the sector contributes nearly €800 billion in revenue annually to Europe’s economy and employs over two million people.
22nd May 2021
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Bain x ECCIA report European luxury sector valued at €800 billion

The European Cultural and Creative Industries Alliance (ECCIA), which brings together over 600 luxury & high-end brands and cultural institutions from 12 European countries, unveils today the latest study produced with Bain & Company on their industry’s contribution to the European economy and culture.

The full report can be read here

The policy recommendations can be read here 

The study shows that the European high-end sector continues to significantly boost sustainable economic growth and prosperity:

- The sector contributes nearly €800 billion in revenue annually to the European economy and now accounts for 4% of European GDP.

- It has grown at rate of 32% in four years between 2014 and 2018.

- The sector employs over 2 million people in Europe and created 300,000 jobs in Europe between 2014 and 2018.

- Exports in the sector represent 10% of Europe’s total exports in 2018.

Beyond the strong economic performance, the study also evidences the significant socio-economic and cultural benefits created by luxury & high-end industries, thanks to substantial investment and a unique business model. Indeed, high-end companies enable the development of upstream production clusters and centres of excellence across Europe and are key players in leading the agenda on digital innovation and sustainability. Moreover, they play a vital role in supporting skills and craftsmanship, and promote European cultural values throughout the world, notably by fostering tourism.

In addition to this study, ECCIA is issuing policy recommendations and calling on EU policy-makers to sustain and enhance the high-end cultural and creative industries’ contribution to the economy and society, through a series of measures including the following:

- Strengthening the existing framework relating to their selective distribution model.

- Strengthening the enforcement of intellectual property rights online and offline to better fight against counterfeiting and support consumer interests.

- Promoting skills and vocational training to provide sustainable employment opportunities.

- Encouraging sustainability through harmonised, fair and long-term policies.

- Ensuring a fair access to markets to support exports.

- Facilitating the arrival and circulation of tourists in the EU.

Dr Andreas Kaufmann, Chairman of the Board of Leica and new President of ECCIA, commented: “Our report shows the economic strength of our sector. Through substantial and long-term investment, our industries not only help creating millions of jobs, but they also act as ambassadors of Europe’s values and culture. At a time when the EU is keen on strengthening its geopolitical role, we call on policy-makers to ensure EU rules adequately support and encourage our unique business model”.

Reacting to the study, Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth Mariya Gabriel, said: “High-end cultural and creative companies play a crucial role for the preservation of Europe’s creativity and savoir-faire, but also for the development of our industrial excellence. This is key to ensure both our competitiveness and the promotion of our values and cultural heritage throughout the world.”

MEP Dr. Christian Ehler further commented: “The findings clearly indicate the essential contribution of Europe’s high-end cultural and creative companies to our economy, society and culture. Appropriate and specific policies are needed to continue supporting the sector and protect the value it generates, in particular in the context of an increasingly digitalized world”.

“Following a steady growth these past years, European luxury and high-end industries further strengthened their position as a key contributor to the overall European economy, exporting top end products & savoir-faire to the rest of the world” concluded Claudia D’Arpizio, a Bain & Company partner and lead author of the study.

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