Key Cities Grabbing Outsized Share of Apparel Sales Growth

Six countries will account for roughly two-thirds of total world growth in apparel sales through 2019

June 7, 2017

Global apparel sales will rise by $156 billion from 2016 to 2019, according to Euromonitor, with growth concentrated in a fairly small number of markets. And within those markets, a relatively small number of cities will account for a significant portion of new sales.

According to projections by Euromonitor, China, the US, India, the UK, Russia and Mexico will account for roughly two-thirds of total world growth in apparel retail sales through 2019.

Apparel Retail Sales by Country, 2016 and 2019, in billions of dollars

                    Country       2016         2019
                     China 273.5 333.5
                     US 273.7 303.0
                     India 54.4 73.2
                     UK 58.1 65.0
                     Russia 29.4 34.5
                     Mexico 13.7 17.8

Source: Euromonitor International

In absolute numbers, China's sales are expected to rise far more than any other country, increasing $60 billion over the three-year period. But as with so many other consumer trends in China, growth will be most pronounced in the largest urban areas. "While China’s six megacities with over 10 million people account for only 7.2% of the country‘s population, they are forecast to account for 19% of total growth of consumer expenditure on clothing and footwear," Euromonitor said.

By contrast, apparel sales in India, while growing at a more rapid clip overall, will be more diffuse. The six fastest growing cities in India—Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Kolkata, Delhi and Hyderabad—will account for only 10% of overall apparel sales gains. To reach the roughly one-fifth of total growth potential represented by just six cities in China, for India would require some 40 cities.

Mexico and Russia have even more concentrated growth, with Moscow expected to account for 31% of new sales, and Mexico City projected to make up 15%.

eMarketer estimates that total retail sales worldwide will rise at rates above 5% through 2019. Retail ecommerce sales, by contrast, will rise more than 20% this year and next, and remain near that pace of growth in 2019.