Retail

Startup Accelerator Debuts From Farfetch

A startup accelerator is not so far-fetched for Farfetch.

Businessoffashion.com reports that the company is debuting a startup accelerator that looks to give the fashion arena a slew of new features tied to services rendered through the online marketplace and through physical stores.

The site said that Farfetch is “building out an array” of such services that run the gamut from mobile payments to tracking consumer behavior spanning several locations. The backdrop is one that is seeing a boost in luxury eCommerce. The tally now stands at 7 percent of the total, as estimated by Bain & Company, and should be roughly 20 percent by 2025.

Businessoffashion.com said the accelerator will “cycle 10 startups through a 12-week program” to be hosted in Lisbon. Farfetch has tied its technology to in-house offerings and has been increasingly using third parties for new apps. The accelerator plans on hastening that process.

Among the partners in the accelerator program, as noted by Stephanie Phair, chief strategy officer at Farfetch, are Burberry and VC firm 500 startups.

“We’re developing an ecosystem,” Phair told the site. “Think about Farfetch as the platform for the luxury industry.”

The accelerator model has been embraced by companies across verticals. In another example of accelerator efforts in retail, LVMH said it would start an accelerator, with the goal of bringing as many as 50 startups a year to its Paris-based “Station F” campus.

The Farfetch accelerator will be known as “Dream Assembly” and comes amid expectations that Farfetch will launch an initial public offering, with as much as a $5 billion valuation rumored, while the company had $198 million in top line in 2016.

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