Farfetch acquires for China play
Written by Peter Walker
Farfetch has acquired social media marketing firm CuriosityChina to help facilitate an expansion of its presence in the Chinese market.
The online fashion retailer said that the deal - for an undisclosed sum - will help its brands build their presence in China with a range of new services.
All of CuriosityChina’s employees will join Farfetch, including co-founders Alexis Bonhomme, who will become commercial vice president of Farfetch’s Chinese arm, Judy Lui, who will move to Chinese managing director; and Arthur Shui, who will become head of technology in China.
This is Farfetch’s third acquisition, after buying UK boutique Browns and Style.com. Aimed at increasing the amount of sales through mobile apps and social media, the latest deal will build upon the existing one-third of sales that already come from the Asia-Pacific region, although most of that is coming from people shopping on Farfetch.com.
“WeChat is the most important channel for commerce in China, so we want to see where it will go,” said Giorgio Belloli, chief commercial and sustainability officer at Farfetch. “It’s where brands are focusing at the moment, they understand Chinese consumers are using dedicated channels on there for marketing and purchasing.”
He added: “We have local engineers who are working on the platform to meet brands requirements, so we will be able to offer to brands a suite of products, and we will be able to support them.”
In February, Burberry announced a partnership with online marketplace Farfetch, allowing its global inventory to be available through a single e-commerce platform. Then in March, Farfetch launched a scheme to provide startups with a programme of mentorship, networking opportunities and access to early-stage funding.