The UK Direct Selling Association reports that “party” sales have surged 120 percent in the past few years—from £177 million in 2009 to £290 million.
From Jamie Oliver’s antipasti platters to Stella & Dot beads and trendy Swedish clothing brand Me&I, thousands of parties are going on around the country every night of the week, generating annual sales of £400 million.
“The rise in popularity of party-based selling is connected to the current economic climate,” says DSA Director General Paul Southworth, who says 20,000 people have joined the industry’s sales force since 2009. “Whereas people might have gone out for dinner or drinks before the recession, direct-selling parties are a cheaper night in socialising with friends and family.”
The UK, which recently reported unemployment at 4.16 million, has seen a growing number of men and those over the age of 50 turn to direct selling companies such as Kleeneze, The Pampered Chef, Silpada, Best in Glass and Barefoot Books to supplement their incomes.
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