Globally, there are more millionaires (14.6 million) and billionaires (about 2,000) than ever before, but conspicuous consumption is on the wane. As J. Rupert, CEO of the Richemont Group, said: “In the future people with money will not wish to show it.”

This trend is driven by:

(1)   Rising inequalities and perceptions of a looming class warfare

(2)    The Chinese authorities’ crackdown on corruption, which has brought to an end the rise of luxury goods sales in the world’s largest growth market (and accounts for most of the 8.9 percent drop in Swiss watch exports in May)

These trends are structurally bearish for luxury companies that sell products (jewelery, cars, etc.) rather than “experiences.”

By opposition, this trend is structurally bullish for the high-end wellness industry, since almost all wellness goods consist of “experiences” rather than of material consumption.


Thierry Malleret is the co-founder and primary author of the Monthly Barometer, a predictive analysis provided exclusively to private investors and today’s most influential opinion and decision-makers. Thierry founded and directed the Global Risk Network at the World Economic Forum (WEF), bringing together top policymakers, CEOs and academics to consider how global issues will affect business and society in the future. For a number of years, Thierry conceived the WEF program at Davos. He holds MAs (in economics and history) and a PhD in Economics. The Wellness Edition of his Monthly Barometer is exclusive to the Global Wellness Institute. For a copy of the full report, join the GWI as a Member or Ambassador.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.