Luxury goods can be defined as products that aren’t considered essential but associated with affluence. Luxury goods can range from the most expensive clothes, shoes, perfumes and fragrances to the most expensive watches and cars. Luxury as a concept has been around since the beginning of civilization. Society has always been divided into social classes. The elite class in society has and is still the biggest consumer of luxury goods in the market today.
Luxury goods are sold by luxury brands. This explains why luxury brands are among the highest valued brands in the world. They provide style and status. Luxury brands remind people what they are paying. In some cases, luxury goods may not even be that attractive to the eye however they still attract buyers because of what the brand represents.
This explains why luxury brands continue to enjoy tremendous success even in these tough economic times. Even though companies like Bain & Company suggest that the luxury goods market is cooling down worldwide with an estimated growth of 4.5% in 2013 down from 5% in 2012, the annual growth rate in 2014 and 2015 is expected to increase according to most analysts to 6% and 6.5% respectively. The size of the luxury goods market is also expected to increase from $273 billion currently to $290 billion by 2015. This simply means that luxury goods brands are the brands to watch in the next few years.
If you are interested in finding out which are the top luxury brands today, you are in the right place. It is important to note that the fashion brands dominate the list of top luxury brands featured below. Although high end car brands like Mercedes also qualify as luxury brands, fashion brands have the highest brand value. Below are the top 10 luxury brands of 2013 according to brand value.
10 Ralph Lauren (Estimated brand value: $4.04 billion)
With an estimated brand value of $4.04 billion according to the latest estimates (2013), Ralph Lauren is definitely one of the top luxury goods brand in the world today. The brand was started by billionaire fashion designer Ralph Lauren back in 1967. Although Ralph Lauren is now a publicly listed company in the NYSE, Ralph Lauren still has a stake in the company. Ralph Lauren is best known for his polo clothing line. Ralph Lauren Corporation sales in the year ending 2013 amounted to $6.9 billion surpassing many large corporations in the world. No wonder Ralph Lauren makes it to this list of top luxury brands in the world today.
In 2009 Polo Ralph Lauren recorded a fiscal revenue of $5 billion.
9 Prada (Estimated brand value: $4.27 billion)
Prada also makes it to this list because of its estimated brand value of $4.27 billion. Prada is one of the most popular Italian Luxury fashion brands in the world today featuring ready to wear, leather & fashion accessories, perfume, shoes, bags e.t.c. Prada was founded by Mario Prada in 1913. Today, the company boasts of having over 250 stores worldwide. Last year (2012), Prada posted a full year profit of $804 million. Half year results this year already indicate an increase in sales by 12%. 2013 will definitely be another good year for Prada considering Prada stocks some of the most expensive women's handbags in the world i.e. the Ostrich leather tote bag that costs approximately $10,000. This is precisely why the Brand makes it to this list.
8 Burberry (Estimated brand value: $4.34 billion)
Burberry Group PLC which owns the Burberry brand is a British luxury fashion goods company which distributes fashion accessories and clothes. The company is also in the business of licensing fragrances. According to the latest Forbes estimates, Burberry has a brand value of $4.34 billion. The brand was founded by Thomas Burberry over a century ago (1856) in Basingstoke, England. Burberry as a brand is most famous for its trench coats. (Some of the most expensive trench coats cost over $35,000). This year has been the best for Burberry considering its half year sales have surpassed the billion euro mark ($1.347 billion). It therefore doesn't come as a surprise why Burberry makes it to this list of top luxury brands of 2013.
7 Tiffany & Co. (Estimated brand value: $5.16 billion)
In seventh place is Tiffany & Co. with an estimated brand value of $5.16 billion according to the latest estimates. Tiffany & Co. is one of the biggest American luxury jewelry & specialty retailer brands. The company’s headquarters is in NYC (New York City), United States. Like Burberry, Tiffany & Co. has been around for more than a century. No wonder the company has managed to turn itself into one of the most valuable brands in the world. The total revenues in 2013 surpassed the billion dollar mark. Clearly Tiffany & Co. is a force to reckon in the Luxury goods market when you consider other factors like the company's expensive ring collection featuring rings with a $10 million price tag.
6 Cartier (Estimated brand value: $5.5 billion)
Cartier is another top luxury brand in the market today that distributes and sells watches and jewelry. Cartier was founded in France over a century ago (1847) by Louis Francois Cartier. Over the 166 years Cartier has been in business, the company has managed to transform itself into one of the biggest luxury brands in the world. According to the latest estimates, Cartier has a brand value of $5.5 billion. As of March 2013, the company’s sales stood at $5 billion. This just shows how marketable Cartier is as a brand. No wonder the Cartier is one of the most valuable luxury brands in the world today. One of the most expensive Cartier merchandise is the $7 Million Onyx & Diamond Panther Bracelet.
5 Hermes (Estimated brand value: $6.18 billion)
Hermes makes it to top 5 of this list because of its $6.18 billion brand value. Hermes is a French luxury goods company specializing in leather lifestyle accessories, luxury goods, perfumery and ready to wear. The company was established in 1837 which makes it one of the oldest luxury goods brand in this list. Hermes posted a 14% profit jump in the first half of this year. This represents an 11% increase in sales compared to the same period last year (2012). The operating profit for the first half in 2013 beat the $671 million forecast registering an operating profit of $787 million. Considering this profit is for the first half in 2013, Hermes clearly deserves to be in this list without even considering the brands popularity around the world.
4 Chanel (Estimated brand value: $7.07 billion)
The Chanel brand was very dominant this year in some of the most prestigious fashion events i.e. the Paris Couture week. Celebrities such as Rihanna and Kristen Stewart were consciously present wearing some of Chanel’s top merchandise. No wonder the brand continues to grow in value every year. The brand has an estimated value of $7.07 billion this year. Founded in 1909 by Alain & Gerard Wertheimer, the brand has managed to beat all odds for more than a century. Currently Chanel has over 300 stores worldwide. No wonder the brand recorded such impressive revenue figures ($4.4 billion) as of November 2013. Chanel surely deserves a top 5 spot in this list. Some of the most expensive perfumes in Chanel's collection $4,200.
3 Rolex (Estimated brand value: $7.9 billion)
Rolex is undoubtedly one of the best most popular watch brands in the world today. Anyone who knows anything about watches knows Rolex watches are among the best if not the best in the world i.e. the $1,16 million 1942 Rolex Chronograph. Founded in 1905 by Alfred Davis and Hans Wilsdorf, Rolex has managed to dominate the luxury watch market for over a century. The Swiss watch maker posted revenues amounting to $4.5 billion as of November 2013. This is a very impressive figure considering Rolex’s core business is selling watches. No wonder Rolex is ranked 3rd in this list of top luxury brands in the world today.
2 Gucci (Estimated brand value: $9.45 billion)
Gucci comes in second in this list because of nearing the $10 billion mark in brand value. Founded in 1921 by Guccio Gucci, Gucci is undoubtedly one of the best Italian leather/fashion goods brands in the world today. Gucci’s operates over 450 stores worldwide generating billions of dollars in revenue every year i.e. $3.24 billion in the first quarter of 2013. Nothing more needs to be said considering Gucci has one of the highest brand values yet the brand has not been around for very long compared to other brands in this list. Gucci definately deserves a top spot in this list.
1 Louis Vuitton (Estimated brand value: $23.58 billion)
Number one on this list of top luxury brands of 2013 is Louis Vuitton with an estimated brand value of $23.58 billion. No other luxury goods brand is expected to command such a high brand value in the next few years which is precisely why Louis Vuitton makes it to the number one spot in this list. Louis Vuitton Malletier which is commonly referred to as Louis Vuitton is the best French fashion house in the market today. This can be attributed to the fact that Louis Vuitton is the most widespread fashion luxury brand in the world with almost 500 stores in over 60 countries worldwide. The company also boasts of having the highest revenue figures currently (close to $10 billion).
Considering Louis Vuitton has been around since 1854, the brand value is deeply rooted in the luxury goods market. You shouldn't therefore expect nothing but the best from this brand in the next few years. It will take long before any other luxury brands take Louis Vuitton’s position in this list. One of the most expensive items in Gucci's luxury goods collection is the $133,400 Kusama Pumpkin Minaudiere Bag.
You may not know that every single Louis Vuitton bag is handmade.
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