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China Digital Roundup I P1, Line, Condé Nast, McLaren

A roundup on how digital is transforming our life and business – both in China and the rest of the world through December 13th.

Using Big Data to Track Chinese Fashion Trends, by Technode

P1 Big Data Exhibition

With a database of over 6 million street style photos taken across China’s biggest cities and through big data analysis, Chinese lifestyle focused social network P1 is now able to track and predict fashion trends as the develop across China.

Starting this Saturday, P1 will host its Great Style Leap exhibition in Beijing’s Taikooli shopping district. The Style Leap exhibition tells the story of China’s rapidly evolving fashion scene driven by urban trendsetters.

 

Line ventures deeper into m-commerce with make-up flash sale, by Tech In Asia

Line & Maybelline

Today, messaging app Line announced a partnership with all-in-one e-commerce logistics firm aCommerce and L’Oreal’s Maybelline New York to bring the cosmetic brand’s newest product to Thailand.

With this partnership, Line users will get access to an exclusive flash sale on the platform which will last from Monday, December 16, to Friday, December 20. Users who buy this not-yet-disclosed product within the promotional period will be the first to own it before its official release next year.

 

Condé Nast Venturing Into Global E-commerce, by WWD

Conde Nast eCommerce Galeries Lafayette

Condé Nast operations on both sides of the Atlantic have joined forces to break into the global e-commerce game, with the first shoots of new business set to appear before the end of next year.

Condé Nast in the U.S. and Condé Nast International have launched a new division devoted to e-commerce, naming Franck Zayan, who is currently responsible for the e-commerce activities of Galeries Lafayette, as president. Zayan will be based in London, and begin work on Jan. 6.

 

McLaren looks to broaden presence in China throughout 2014, by Luxury Daily

McLaren Shanghai

British sportscar manufacturer McLaren Automotive is set to double its Chinese dealers in 2014 from four to eight as it continues to gain traction in the market.

The brand unveiled its Chinese language Web site and its first four dealers in September as it tried to hit the ground running. Although it may seem that the brand has some catching up to do compared with other luxury automotive brands that have flourished in China, it was able to draw upon its racing reputation for an early boost, having won the Chinese Grand Prix in 2008, 2010 and 2011.

 

Are You Ready For the Store of the Future? by Profit Guide

Store of the Future

This vignette is a hypothetical composite—but not for long: Technology is transforming the in-store experience. Inexpensive analytics software and slick hardware already allow retailers of all sizes to make shopping easier for consumers who demand convenience. “Online shopping has conditioned consumers to expect more from retailers in-store,” says Kevin Falk, CTO at Montreal point-of-sale system developer LightSpeed.

 

Connexions – A Closer Look on “E-Retail: Luxury Gets Going… Finally!” by Patrice Nordey

LANVIN+完稿-1

According to a study done by KPMG, 72% of Chinese tourists traveling abroad claim to have bought luxury goods. These purchases represent a significant proportion of their total expenditure (over 40%) with the most popular products of choice as cosmetics, watches and handbags. The prices of these products bought abroad are 20 to 30% cheaper than in China, and account for half of China’s luxury market today.

However, with the rapid development of online shopping in the Middle Kingdom (159 billion Euros at end 2012), we see pure Internet players taking advantage of this lucrative market in the recent years. Startups such as 5lux.com, Ihaveu.com, Shangpin or Xiu.com (87 million turnover in 2012) buy directly from distributors – rarely trademarks – and short all intermediaries to offer prices 20-50% lower than those charged by official channels shops.

Some of these actors, such as Secoo.com, even sell second hand luxury goods while ensuring the authenticity and condition of the product through strict certifications.

To counter these new discount models – which have tremendously opened consumers’ appetite for the “digital luxury” – premium and high end brands fuss to offer their online distribution model to recreate the conditions of an experience luxury with exclusivity, personalization and value-added services.

Upscale cosmetics brands were the first to launch, for example Lancome or the specialized retailer Sephora in 2006. Marni, Armani, Bally, Dolce & Gabbana, Alexander Wang and the Moncler brands have also launched in 2012 under the auspices of the Italian Yoox platform. More recently, Hugo Boss and Coach launched their e-commerce with a narrow range of products. Department stores such as Marks & Spencers and Lane Crawford also accelerated the development of their Internet offerings for their wealthy clients in China and Hong Kong.

Estimated at 11.1 billion RMB in 2011, the e-luxury market in China jumped by 71% in 2012 with 18.9 billion RMB of online spending. It is expected to exceed 45 billion RMB by 2015 according to iResearch and thus, capturing 10% of the first luxury market in the world.

China Digital Roundup I In-Store Technology, Michael Kors, TechCrunch Shanghai

A roundup on how digital is transforming our life and business – both in China and the rest of the world through November 22th.

Is In-Store Technology Increasing or Subduing the Relevance of Retail Employees? from Luxury Daily

Guccy In Store Technology

As luxury retailers implement more responsive and comprehensive technology into their stores, employees may find it challenging to prove their relevance.

Mobile technology holds clear advantages over people, such as the ability to retrieve warehouses of product information and design virtual outfits on the spot. While making technology a part of the retail experience can no longer be avoided, luxury retailers should be aware that shearing away too many jobs can hurt brand reputation and certain positions just can’t be replicated by a device.

The report notes that as technology continues to reinvent the retail space, retailers should invest in omnichannel capabilities that will enrich the relationships between consumer and sales associate.

 

China’s Mobile Habits, from Red Luxury

China mobile trends 2013

The smartphone phone has fundamentally changed the way consumers shop, from how they evaluate products to how they buy. A new study by Mindshare China and Millward Brown China urges brands to deliver “a seamless branding and retail experience across all platforms.”

“We know China is such a dynamic market and consumers are increasingly not only using PCs and laptops, but are now directly engaging on mobile platforms for shopping purposes. This increases expectations for brands to deliver a viable shopping experience on all store fronts,” says Ben Condit, Digital Partner at Mindshare China. “From the research, compellingly, we see this to be true across all market levels in China, not just at the top tier.”

 

Michael Kors Brings Instagram Campaign to Life at Tokyo Museum, from Luxury Daily

tokyo Michael Kors Instagram

U.S. label Michael Kors is connecting fans of its Selma handbag through an Instagram initiative that stimulates conversation and unites the brand’s global tribe of enthusiasts. The fan-fueled and city-focused #JetSetSelma effort builds upon Michael Kors’ already diverse product-based digital presence. The label has successfully used key social media platforms, such as Tumblr and Pinterest, to solidify its relationship with core consumers.

“#JetSetSelma is a platform on which to build the association between the handbag’s style, name and social media identity,” said Lisa Pomerantz, senior vice president of global communications and marketing at Michael Kors, New York.

 

TechCrunch Shanghai – How Chinese Bitcoin Businesses See the Market, from Technode

bitcoin conference TechCrunch Shanghai China

The trading price of Bitcoin, the algorithms-powered virtual currency, as of writing is about $530 on the trading platform Mt. Gox. Looking at real-time trading platforms the trading volume from China has been among the top markets worldwide. According to Bitcoin Charts,  31% of the total exchange volume worldwide is traded in CNY (Chinese Yuan).

During the event, the panelists conclude that 1) the value of Bitcoin would continue going up, 2) the commissions fee rates are lower than what traditional financial services charge. Bitcoin is the first time one currency has so many advantages, 1) scarcity, 2) distributed computing 3) digital payment 4) direct transactions that you don’t need any third-parties to process money and 5) it’s very safe that theoretically it cannot be stolen.

 

China’s Unstoppable E-Commerce Market Ready to ‘Explode’, from Jing Daily

China e-commerce expansion 1st market

According to the firm’s 2013 Global Retail E-Commerce Index, China’s $64 billion online retail market is expected to “explode” to reach $271 billion in the next five years, placing it at the top of the list for the world’s most promising e-commerce markets. The 30-country ranking includes both developing and developed markets, with Japan and the United States trailing China in second and third place on the list.

With a developing “Next Generation” categorization, China’s e-commerce market has “been able to shortcut the traditional online retail maturity curve as online retail grows at the same time that physical retail becomes more organized,” according to the report. Although there are still significant logistical challenges, the report predicts that “infrastruc­ture improvements, increased Internet access for rural regions, rising wealth, and consumers’ growing predisposition to spend” will all lead to the market’s continued boom.

China Digital Roundup I The Left Shoe Company, Tmall, Cartier, Le Printemps

A roundup on how digital is transforming our life and business – both in China and the rest of the world through November 12th.

The Left Shoe Company: Old Craftsmanship and New Tech, from Business Of Fashion

Left Shoe Company Scan

The London outpost of Finnish upstart The Left Shoe Company is located in a jewel-sized store in Princes Arcade, a covered shopping arcade that runs between Piccadilly and Jermyn Street in one of the British capital’s smartest shopping districts, known for its men’s shoe and shirtmakers.

At the store, customers can order made-to-measure shoes, selecting from six different sole options and 20 different upper variations, available in a wide range of colors and materials, from leather and suede sourced from Italy to exotic skins like stingray and alligator, sourced from Taiwan and Paraguay, respectively. The shoes are designed by Maurizio Mazzucato, who works with some of Italy’s largest fashion houses.

 

Alibaba’s Tmall Sees $500 Million spent in First 20 Minutes, from Tech In Asia

Tmall Singles Days

It has just turned November 11 in China, commencing the nation’s craziest day of online shopping discounts and spending. It’s called 11/11. At Alibaba HQ, China’s top e-commerce company is watching its consumers spending in real-time in what I like to call its ‘big data’ war-room. Alibaba’s Tmall, its open marketplace for merchants, saw $177 million spent in the first six minutes. That leapt to $266 million (RMB 1.64 billion) after the first ten minutes, and then to very near $500 million (RMB $3.021 billion) at the 20-minute mark. (UPDATE: After the first 50 minutes, $1 billion has been spent).

In the hour before midnight, Alibaba representatives said that six million people had put items in their virtual baskets, awaiting the start of 11/11 and for the discounts to become active. More than 20,000 merchants on the Tmall online marketplace – from small businesses to major brands like Uniqlo – are taking part in the sales day.

 

How to Set up a Fashion Business from Scratch via e-Commerce, from Business Of Fashion

eCommerce Fashion Brands

It’s no secret that the web has become one of the most effective tools for fashion brands to market and sell their wares. According to market research firm Emarketer, online sales of apparel and accessories are now growing faster than any other e-commerce product segment (20 percent per year).

By 2016, the category will account for $73 billion worth of online purchases in the US alone, just over 20 % of all online retail sales. And while young fashion brands will always need to maintain offline touch points where customers can touch, feel and try on product, seizing the e-commerce opportunity is equally crucial to long-term success.

 

Cartier CEO Stresses Importance of Carefully Curated Digital Presence, from Luxury Daily

Cartier - YouTube

The North America chief of French jeweler Cartier at the L2 Forum 2013 said that while the brand is investing heavily in digital media, the house proceeds with caution when applying a new social media tactic, keeping in mind the brand image and long legacy.

While other brands jumped on Facebook and began posting a lot of content, Cartier decided to test the waters first, only posting one item a month out of worries that fans would tire of seeing multiple posts from them. During the “A Conversation with Prestige CEOs” session the Cartier executive said that the jewelry brand has since raised the frequency of its social media postings, but still keeps a tight hold on its presence online.

 

Printemps Sets E-commerce Strategy, from WWD

Le Printemps Paris

Absent from e-commerce until now, Printemps said it hopes to generate at least 10 % of its sales from the channel within three to four years.
“We believe the French market is at a tipping point,” Printemps chairman and CEO Paolo de Cesare said. “Customers want to have an experience online, and in a physical store.”

Last month, Printemps acquired French fashion e-commerce site Place des Tendances from media firm TF1 Group, and de Cesare said it would be its main vehicle in the online world.