China's Secoo to sell Prada, Miu Miu online, follows René Caovilla debut
today May 29, 2019
Prada’s recent announcement that it plans to rationalise its approach to wholesale also came along with news that it would focus more heavily on digital. And we’ve seen the first results of this new strategy with news that China’s Secoo Holding Limited has entered into a contract with the Prada Group to offer both of the company’s star brands, Prada and Miu Miu.
The products will be online via Secoo starting from from next month “following Prada’s strategy based on distribution control and brand image protection,” we're told. There were no details available beyond that, but it's undeniably big news, regardless of how understated the release may have been.
Prada is currently in the middle of a major recovery phase, bouncing back from a few years of falling profits with its latest collections receiving critical acclaim and its brands seeing rising sales. But the company has been a relative latecomer to the digital world, although it's clearly now embracing all-things online.
And it’s significant that Prada’s biggest digital announcement so far is focused on China. The Chinese luxury market is on course to become the world’s largest and with that country’s Millennial shoppers heavily focused on digital, the deal makes good commercial sense.
And linking up with Secoo also makes sense, with the company having proved itself in the luxury digital sphere in its native country and beyond in the wider Asian market.
In fact, as the news about Prada and Miu Miu was released, we also learned that Italian footwear label René Caovilla has launched with Secoo, offering a limited edition Orange Classic Cleo Sandal 40 exclusively as part of its debut.
COO and creative director Edoardo Caovilla said: "Secoo provides us with wide space to seek cooperation and leverage the clout and multi-dimensional advantages of its platform to enable closer communications and interaction between us and consumers from across the world. It also draws the attention of celebrities and social elites pursuing high-quality life to the essential craftsmanship that sustains a brand for many years.”
Founded in 2008, Secoo now serves 27 million high-end consumers and offers over 400,000 premium products and services from over 3,800 domestic and international brands. It covers fashion, jewellery, home appliances and artwork.
The company said the introduction of René Caovilla is “an important step in Secoo's efforts to expand into high-end lifestyle services. It also allows for a wider range of brand categories and cooperation methods, facilitating more diversified and better-defined development.”
Secoo CEO and founder Richard Rixue Li said that in the future, the company “will engage more brands of this kind on our platform.”
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