Farfetch expands online retail play with $18m boost

eCommerce is booming, and there are hundreds of online retail websites where shoppers can buy products with the click of a button. Its growing success can partly be attributed to ease-of-use and the fact that buyers can choose from thousands of products without leaving their home.

The latest success story is Farfetch.com, a four-year-old London-based start-up that represents 200 boutiques from 12 countries with 35 000 products and “forms the hub of a global fashion community that unites independent boutiques around the world with fashion lovers”. The site recently revealed that it had raised $18-million to boost further growth thanks to investments from Index Ventures, eVenture Capital Partners and Advent Venture Partners.

The online marketplace site for independent fashion boutiques plans to open a New York office with the newly accumulated funds and further its expansion into emerging markets such as Brazil and Asia by the end of the year.

The ecommerce site is part of an online retail boom that make high-end fashion labels like Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent, Alexander McQueen, Acne and more available on one digital platform.

Online consumerism has changed consumerist patterns as technology gives way to creating new shopping platforms for buyers, which makes sites like Farfetch.com increasingly popular — it’s like bringing Oxford or New Bond Street together under one online roof.

Founder and chief executive of Farfetch.com José Neves said: “Farfetch.com is growing extremely fast and now has a strong international presence, aggregating an unrivalled product selection from boutiques in different countries. We felt it was the right time to scale up our team and operations and seize some fantastic opportunities.”

Since its launch in 2008 Farfetch.com has grown to having 56 000 online customers in 100 countries with most of its deliveries made to emerging markets.



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