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Kendall and Kylie Jenner are on to their next project. The sister-entrepreneur duo is teaming up with Italian mass-market retailer OVS for a capsule collection to be released throughout six deliveries. The womenswear collection will include both ready-to-wear and accessories. Three deliveries will be made in spring, and the other three will be made in fall.

The first delivery will be available on Ovs.com, in addition to being available at a selection of stores in Italy, Switzerland and Austria. OVS' goal with this collaboration is to be more in line with today's contemporary offerings. Collaborations have become a major part of their strategy.

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Recently, the company has collaborated with Elio Fiorucci, Matthew Williamson, Kristina T, Alberto Aspesi and Jean Paul Gaultier. Currently OVS has locations in over 32 countries. Their 2015 revenues were 1.32 billion Euros.

How Farfetch is becoming a key player in the luxury realm

OPINIONFarfetch has always been on the fashion radar, but ultimately never a place where I would choose to shop. What initially kept me from making transactions was price inconsistency across retailers and markets. A pair of Saint Laurent boots that cost 595 euros at a store in Belgium, could be 630 euros in Italy, 675 francs in Switzerland and a whopping 1100 dollars in the United Stated. Comparison shopping and webrooming would make even the least sophisticated online shopper think twice about paying more for goods outside their own market.

But FarFetch is proving to be far more than just conglomerating retail store's products across various markets in a single website. It works with over 700 boutiques worldwide and is proving to be a tech company worth reckoning with; a clever set-up (selling fashion from 100s of stores but not owning any stock) means it has pioneered a new omni-channel, omni-market approach without any risk. All of the clothes and accessories it sells are neither bought, warehoused, packaged and shipped by FarFetch. All the benefits but none of the headaches of being a retailer.

Much like Zalando, which has recognised its brand partnerships are what set it apart from other pureplayers, Farfetch has cleverly been cultivating a series of partnerships with some of the biggest names in the luxury business.

Saint Laurent benefits from Farfetch's partnerships in China

Saint Laurent, for example, has partnered with Farfetch to grow its Chinese ecommerce business. How? By utilising another of Farfetch's partnerships, this time with JD.com, the world's third largest ecommerce company.

According to Luxury Daily, Saint Laurent is able to benefit from JD’s logistics, marketing and service capabilities designed to cater to local clientele. Farfetch’s Shanghai-based team will tap into the company’s relationships with both JD and WeChat to better market and sell to the Chinese consumer, particularly millennials.

Similarly, Condé Nast worked with Farfetch to host the combination of commerce and editorial content previously hosted on Style.com after the media group ceased operation of the site.

Earlier this year Farfetch debuted its Store of the Future in East London, linking together the online and offline worlds through data touch points that enhance and personalize the retail experience for consumers while presenting sales associates with chances to become in-store influencers.

Luxury retail is reconfigured to respond to modern consumers’ shifting behavior and expectations, and Farfetch is seamlessly blending technology with its new bricks and mortar premises. The company is also increasingly positioning itself as a technology provider. It handles data from all four corners of the globe, selling over 2,000 designer brands from hundreds of stores. Luxury brands are keen to tap into its rich data pool.

Founded in 2007 by José Neves, a London-based Portuguese entrepreneur, Farfetch began as an online portal for luxury boutiques. Neves previously launched shoe design business SWEAR in the 90s, followed by B Store in 2001, a fashion licensing and wholesale company selling a range of up-and-coming designer labels in a physical store.

During a trip to Paris Style Week in 2007, when Neves was wholesaling for his B Store brand, the idea for a virtual boutique marketplace came to fruition. A 2013 interview in The Daily Telegraph details the moment when Neves realised the need to give independent fashion boutiques an online retail presence: "Dozens of boutique owners had been through our doors and what they were saying was really sobering. Business was bad, they couldn't rely on local custom any more but they didn't have the experience to do e-tailing either. They had amazing taste levels but they were having to play it increasingly safe."

Photo credit: Farfetch homepage; article source Luxury Daily, Wikipedia

Next to trial store-in-store at Tesco

High street retailer Next is to trial a new store-in-store concept at Tesco, the UK's largest grocer. Customers will soon be able to go for their daily shop and fashion fix under the same roof.

Next this week opened a 4300sq ft concession inside Tesco Extra in Surrey Quays, stocking its basic fashion ranges in both menswear and womenswear.

“We want to offer our customers the best possible choice and convenience when they shop with us,” a Tesco spokeswoman stated. "We have a number of partnerships in stores across the UK, complementing our existing Tesco products and services."

Product diversity will attract customers

The news comes as shopping behaviour is changing and consumers have less of a need to visit giant supermarkets with the convenience of online shopping and preferring to make more frequent trips to local stores. This means supermarkets are earning less profit per square foot and are choosing to lease their retail spaces to drive more customers to their stores. Greater product diversity and a more immersive experience will draw customers to its stores.

Tesco first partnered with Sir Philip Green’s Arcadia group last year and currently has 14 Dorothy Perkins, Burton, Evans and Wallis concessions across five stores.

The grocer intends to install around six more Arcadia concessions in a further four stores by the end of the year, analysts at a presentation at its Welwyn Garden City headquarters were told.

The Arcadia tie-up forms part of Tesco’s plan to have at least 26 concessions by the end of this year, and to open 35 additional concessions a year after that.

Tesco is not the only grocer to partner with fashion retailers on its premises. Several of the ‘Big Four’ grocers are housing different high-street brands within their larger stores as the switch to online and more convenience food shopping reduces demand for large supermarkets.

Since Sainsbury's took over Home Retail Group for 1.4bn pounds in 2016, the supermarket giant has launched homeware Habitat concessions in large stores. The supermarket has also been rolling-out Argos concessions.

Photo credit: Next website

Inditex to sell 16 Zara stores in Spain following online boom

London - Spanish apparel conglomerate Inditex is selling 16 Zara stores in Iberia, as online shopping continues to grow in Spain.

Inditex, the world's largest apparel retailer, is reportedly asking 400 million euros (472 million USD, 353 million pounds) for the stores under a 20 -year sale and leaseback deal. This agreement would give the buyer the right to exit the properties after five years, according to a report from Bloomberg. 14 Zara stores in Spain and 2 in Portugal are included in the sale, which is part of the clothing retailer's plan to streamline its leasing strategy.

Increasing employment levels and the improved macroeconomic environment has helped drive apparel sales over the last year, as the clothing and footwear market is expected to have increased 3 percent in 2017 to 30 billion euros according to Mintel. However, the way consumers buy fashion is shifting, as more Spanish shoppers are choosing to purchase clothes online.

29 percent of Spanish shoppers buy products at least once a month via their smartphone, according to data from PWC. But only 3 percent of all Spanish retail sales were done online last year, according to Aberdeen Standard Investments in comparison with 15 percent in the UK. Nevertheless, Spain and Italy have been highlighted as two of the fastest growing markets for online shopping, as more Spaniards become comfortable with online shopping.

Photo: Zara, By Gpccurro (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 ( https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Plus-size fashion retailer Yours Clothing is continuing its expansion with the opening of its 130th store in Bromley.

The opening coincided with the retailer reporting that sales were up 22 percent to 41 million pounds in the six months to July 20, while pre-tax profits grew to 5 million pounds during the same period.

During the period, Yours Clothing opened 16 new stores, launched a German e-commerce site, created a new app and allowed customers to reserve items online for collection within an hour.

Yours Clothing chief operating officer, Resh Dorka, said: “Our stores are an integral part of our business as spaces to showcase our products and offer the excellent in-store service we know our customers really value.

“Our strong first-half performance demonstrates the excellent momentum in the business and the increasing recognition of Yours as a go-to destination for great fitting, excellent value, fashionable size products.”

Fendi opens new London store on Sloane Street

Italian fashion house Fendi has opened its new store in London. Located on 181-182 Sloane Street, the new store is further down the road from the luxury label’s former store.

Designed by Milanese interior design company Dimore Studio, the two-story store features Fendi’s women’s handbags and accessories as well as women’s and men’s ready-to-wear. Fendi has worked together with the interior design firm over the years, as the company created the luxury brand’s store and suite concept for Palazzo Fendi in Rome as well as Fendi’s boutique at French premium ski resort Courchevel.

“We are happy to have worked with Dimore Studio on the Sloane store, which is truly distinctive, sophisticated and with a whispered luxury and intimate feel expressed through the details and the materials chosen,” said Fendi chairman and chief executive officer Pietro Beccari to WWD. “They have perfectly translated our codes into an ideal Fendi apartment in London, such an iconic destination for luxury, culture, and design, as well as a very important market both for local and international clients.”

Fendi’s new store interior was inspired by Roman apartments from the 1960s, with a contemporary and luxurious twist. A number of vintage designs, such as glass side tables, Pierre Cardin wooden chairs and a reinterpretation of the Venini Murano glass chandelier, are present throughout the new store together with more modern items. The first floor of the new store features accessories and handbags, while the second floor is divided into two areas: one for women’s ready-to-wear, with a VIP section and the other for men’s ready-to-wear.

Photo: Fendi AW17, Facebook

Marie France Van Damme expands with Marrakech location

Marie France Van Damme just announced a new boutique opening in Marrakech. Launching in Mamounia Palace, the Hong Kong-based designer just planted new retail roots in the area.

The new boutique stands as the latest retail addition for Marie France Van Damme. As the brand has expanded in several categories including swimwear, bridal, ready-to-wear, accessories, and more; it seems the label is moving forward as well with its retail footprint. This will be the label's second location in Hong Kong. Currently, Marie France Van Damme in sold in over 100 retail locations including stores such as Le Bon Marché, Harrods, Selfridges, Bergdorf Goodman, Saks, Neiman Marcus, and such exclusive resorts as Aman and One&Only. Marie France Van Damme also has stores in Los Angeles, London, Singapore, Bangkok, and Phuket.

Marie France Van Damme expands with Marrakech location

The resort wear designer recently just launched her first U.S. store as well. In September of this year, the designer stated her flagship would open in Beverly Hills. As a local favorite among celebrities, Marie France Van Damme's fate in the U.S. seems to be promising. With more and more exposure globally and nationally, the Hong Kong native's emergence in retail displays success for the company's business.

Source: Marie France Van Damme

JD Sports upsizes store at Silverburn

JD Sports has “significantly” upsized its presence at Silverburn shopping centre in Glasgow to nearly double the size of the original unit.

The new upsize store now covers 12,831 square foot across two floors and follows strong demand for sports fashion and fitness-focused brands at the shopping centre, which recently announced the addition of PureGym.

JD Sports upsizes store at Silverburn

The new JD Sports was designed by an in-house team and features the brand’s latest concept with a complete range of trainers, sports and fashion from big-name brands including Nike, Adidas, and The North Face.

JD Sports head of acquisitions Warren Thompson, said: “We are delighted to open the doors of our brand new upsized store which provides an enhanced experience and a far greater range of products. The Silverburn store has always been key in this region and the opportunity to nearly double the size to create this flagship will enable us to keep building upon this success.”

JD Sports upsizes store at Silverburn

David Pierotti, general manager at Silverburn, added: “JD Sports’ significant investment in its presence at Silverburn is testament to the centre’s reputation as the region’s leading retail and leisure destination.

JD Sports upsizes store at Silverburn

“The brand’s decision to upsize reflects strong occupier demand and is a prime example of the current trend amongst retailers to invest in large stores in prime regional locations. Since opening, the brand has amassed a strong following from Silverburn’s far-reaching catchment, and we know that our loyal customers will be thrilled with this brand-new store.”

JD Sports upsizes store at Silverburn

Silverburn is anchored by Debenhams and is home to over 120 retailers including H&M, River Island and Flannels, which opened its first Scottish store earlier this year.

Images: courtesy of JD Sports/Silverburn

H&M’s Group newest brand, Arket, is set to open its third store in London next spring as the Swedish retail group continues to roll out its latest store concept.

Set to open in spring, 2018, the store will be located in Westfield Stratford City. The third UK Arket store opening comes after the brand’s debut opening this August. Market opened its first store on Regent Street on August 25 to much fanfare. One month later, Arket opened its second store in London at Covent Garden, at 27-29 Long Acre.

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Since the launch of the new retail chain, Arket has opened five stores across Europe, including stores in Germany, Belgium, and Denmark. The next store openings following Arket’s third store in London at Westfield Stratford will be the brand’s first store in the Netherlands, in Amsterdam and Stockholm, Sweden.

Arket aims to be a “modern-day market” for men and women, focusing on minimalistic and timeless wardrobe essentials. An exact opening date for its store in Westfield Stratford has yet to be confirmed.

Sophie Hulme launches customisation service

British accessories designer Sophie Hulme has opened her first standalone boutique in the Burlington Arcade to coincide with the launch of her new personalisation service.

The 323 square foot boutique, which has been designed in collaboration between Hulme and her husband Ted Swift, features sustainable material sourced from Kvadrat textile studio and made from recycled denim and cotton.

The store houses the brand’s Resort 2018 collection alongside the label’s core styles, with the walls and windows displaying knolled arrangements of deconstructed Sophie Hulme bags, as well as showcasing the full range of personalisation options available in store.

The boutique will be the only place to get Sophie Hulme products personalised in its exclusive in-store only service, where a dedicated personalisation team will advice customers on methods, style, colour, selection and positioning.

Sophie Hulme launches customisation service

Customers can personalise the handbags by adding leather letters, which are crafted from stacked, compacted saddle leather. These Leather Letters launched exclusively with the Resort 2018 collection and are available with ten signature styles across a palette of eight colours.

There is also the option to have hand-painted personalisation by acclaimed sign writer, Mark MacDonald, as well as leather embossing either gold-foiled or blind on several styles.

Sophie Hulme is also stocked in Harrods, Selfridges, Liberty and Fortnum and Mason in the UK, as well as in Lane Crawford and Harvey Nichols in Asia, Myer in Australia, and in Bloomingdales in the Middle East.

Images: via Sophie Hulme website