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Saudi Arabia’s fashion industry is booming, reaching over $24 billion

The kingdom’s local fashion industry contributes a significant $12.5 billion.

Saudi Arabia’s fashion industry is booming, reaching over $24 billion
[Source photo: Krishna Prasad/Fast Company Middle East]

The Saudi fashion industry is experiencing a meteoric rise, driven by strategic initiatives that have fostered a vibrant ecosystem.

According to a new report by the Small and Medium Enterprises General Authority (Monsha’at), the sector’s value reached a staggering $24.61 billion in the first quarter of 2024.

The report offers a deeper look into the industry’s composition. The local fashion market contributes $12.5 billion, while consumer spending on imported brands is $7.3 billion. This data highlights a substantial opportunity for domestic brands to capture a larger market share.

Looking ahead, the future of Saudi fashion appears even brighter. Monsha’at projects a cumulative growth of 48% in the sector’s value by 2025. The industry is also creating significant employment opportunities, with the report revealing a workforce of 230,000, with women comprising over half (52%).

This growth can be attributed to several key developments. Launching groundbreaking programs and dedicated spaces for nurturing local talent has empowered Saudi designers.

Strategic partnerships with global fashion leaders have also provided invaluable knowledge and exposure. High-profile events like the inaugural Riyadh Fashion Week in 2023 and the recent Red Sea Fashion Week further solidify the kingdom’s commitment to becoming a major player on the world stage.

The report also highlights Saudi Arabia’s leadership in venture capital investment within the MENA region. During the first quarter, a remarkable $239.9 million was invested in startups, capturing a dominant 65% market share. Philip Bahoshy, CEO of MAGNiTT, emphasizes this achievement, solidifying the kingdom’s position as a magnet for venture capital activity.

Monsha’at’s report also highlights the success stories of inspiring entrepreneurs like Princess Deemah bint Mansour bin Saud (founder of Personage), Mohammed Khoja (founder of luxury label Hindamme), and Kamal Hubaishi (founder of streetwear brand Urbn Lot) who are paving the way for a flourishing future in Saudi fashion entrepreneurship.

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