With global travel restrictions in place to contain the spread of COVID-19, all Singaporeans were advised to defer all travel abroad until further notice. Banned from travelling, domestic consumption of luxury eyewear, in particular, the purchase of luxury sunglasses for leisure and holiday purposes, resulted in significant declines in 2020.
As Singapore entered the 2-month long “Circuit Breaker” from April to June 2020, only essential services including optical shops were permitted to operate. However, tight regulations such as reduced opening hours in addition to appointment-only consultations were imposed.
The competitive landscape of luxury eyewear in Singapore continued to be dominated by Kering Eyewear Singapore Pte Ltd at the end of the review period, with the player offering a wide range of leading brands including Gucci (following the ending of Safilo’s licensing contract in 2018), Saint Laurent and Bottega Veneta. Its closest competitor at a notable distance, Luxottica, had gained value share pre-pandemic due to the merger with Essilor, with Prada, Armani and Coach now globally owned by EssilorLuxottica SA.
With the notion of preventive health awareness set to prevail following the outbreak of the pandemic, increased sanitation and hygiene procedures will be incorporated into luxury optical shops as part of daily operating practices. According to the Ministry of Health’s safety regulations, all optical practitioners working in these specialist stores are expected to observe strict personal hygiene and infection control when attending to customers, such as cleaning their hands with hand sanitisers before and after each appointment, or the wearing of masks when in close contact with customers.
Historically, players within luxury eyewear have been slower to invest in the development of e-commerce than their counterparts in other industries, due to the inherent difficulty of driving sales online without the in-person clinical expertise and physical interaction with products provided by opticians in offline stores. Furthermore, the difficulty in judging the quality of eyewear online creates expectations of an inconvenient shopping experience and high operational costs for luxury eyewear players.
Luxury eyewear is predicted to see further mixed results over the forecast period. Luxury sun glasses for instance, is expected to perform better overall, with a surge in demand expected in 2021 before returning to some level of normalisation due to the likely return to first of all domestic expenditure and the possibility of staycations with the virus still in circulation.
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Understand the latest market trends and future growth opportunities for the Luxury Eyewear industry in Singapore with research from Euromonitor International's team of in-country analysts – experts by industry and geographic specialisation.
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This report originates from Passport, our Luxury Eyewear research and analysis database.
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