NEW YORK — Madison Avenue has the highest concentration of British brands in the U.S., and according to Charlotte Keesing, the director of public affairs at Walpole, an organization for U.K.-based luxury brands, these companies’ interest in the popular strip won’t wane anytime soon.
“The U.S. market is key to the luxury industry,” said Keesing, who moderated a panel on British luxury at the British Consulate here on Thursday. Keesing said New York City makes up around 30 percent of the $75 billion luxury market, which is larger than the entire Japanese luxury market.
Panelists included Larry Barkley, president of North America at English watch company Bremont, and Jerome Mackay, marketing director at the family-owned British leather goods brand Ettinger.
The panel was the start of the “Great Britain on Madison Avenue” event, which was created by the Madison Avenue Business Improvement District and the U.K. Trade and Investment, and will run through Sunday.
The event, which is open to the public, highlights 20 British retailers on Madison Avenue — between 57th and 86th Streets — that include Barbour, Mulberry, Roland Mouret, L.K. Bennett, Alexander McQueen and Anya Hindmarch.
Jimmy Choo will serve British teas and pastries, while John Lobb has created a window display showcasing landscapes from Cornwall.
A portion of proceeds from the weekend will go toward the Historic Royal Palaces, a charitable organization that manages unoccupied royal palaces in the U.K.