Retail giant Amazon has been trying to enter the luxury sector for some time now and the latest update is that the brand will launch a luxury platform in September just as fashion weeks across the globe kick-off.
The platform will first launch in the US and will feature a clutch of top American and European luxury brands.
While the brand itself hasn’t confirmed or denied anything, Women’s Wear Daily (WWD) reported in January 2020 that Amazon would launch the venture in Spring. This was delayed due the pandemic.
The website has now reported that Amazon now plans to launch next month. It has stated that the luxury brands will have full control over running their e-stores, including decisions regarding the aesthetics and the atmosphere of the store. The brands will also have the power to decide the price and discounts offered.
The model will be similar to Farfetch where Amazon functions as a marketplace as opposed to owning the merchandise itself.
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The partnership will give these luxury brands access to Amazon’s efficient delivery network as well as its warehousing amenities.
WWD had earlier reported that a $100 million marketing campaign is in the works and a warehouse in Arizona is being built for the project. Reports also state that the marketplace will work with the brands on film and television content.
Forbes while reporting about the impending launch highlighted the point of increased risk of counterfeits entering the system, either through other vendors or through goods that are returned to the seller.
So far most luxury brands have stayed away from selling on Amazon. In the last few years, Amazon brought premium beauty products from Dior and Givenchy on board by promising brand gating (restricted third party sellers from selling these brands’ products).
In July 2020, Amazon also partnered with Vogue to create a digital storefront Common Threads for winners of the Vogue/CFDA Fashion Fund competition but the overall response so far has been lukewarm reports Forbes.
Whether Amazon is able to crack the luxury category is something that only time will tell.
There are reports that Amazon is also working with a few designers who will showcase at the London Fashion Week (September 18-22) on a sustainability project which will be revealed closer to the fashion week.