Oscar de la Renta CEO Picks Amazon Over Fashion Week for Customer Acquisition

fashion show

Oscar de la Renta is using Amazon rather than fashion weeks for customer acquisition.

The New York-based luxury fashion house has found that by streaming a show on the eCommerce site and displaying its goods at off-season shows, it reaches its clients directly. Fashion weeks and other industry events reach only industry buyers and the fashion press, the Financial Times reported Thursday (Dec. 15).

“Our industry has a problem keeping up with the Joneses,” Oscar de la Renta CEO Alex Bolen said in the report. “I have no business spending that kind of money on a fashion show to sell clothes.”

Many small and medium-sized brands are focusing on running a profitable business rather than trying to keep up with the promotional activities of luxury giants like LVMH and Kering, according to the report.

At Oscar de la Renta, sales are above the pre-pandemic 2019 and profit margins have increased from 10% to 25%, the report said.

“Is Amazon exactly the right venue for luxury fashion? I’m not sure,” Bolen said in the report. “But we have to experiment with new ways to get our story out.”

When Amazon Luxury Stores made its debut two years ago, it did so as an invitation-only offering to eligible Prime members that kicked off with the fall/winter 2020 line of Oscar de la Renta.

A September 2020 press release noted that collections are “sold directly from the participating brands as a ‘store within a store’ experience, brands independently make decisions regarding their inventory, selection and pricing—and Amazon offers the merchandising tools for brands to create and personalize content in each of their unique brand voices.”

As PYMNTS reported Oct. 21, Amazon has since expanded the concept to European markets and added brands in the U.S.

“Since unveiling Luxury Stores at Amazon with iconic fashion house Oscar de la Renta, the U.S. store now includes an extensive and diverse range of global fashion and beauty brands and is constantly exploring new and exciting ways to engage customers,” Amazon said in a June blog post.

At the same time, Walmart, Target, Kohl’s, Macy’s and other players are trying to find ways to shrink Amazon’s widening moat in the retail apparel category.

As PYMNTS reported Aug. 22, Walmart, for example, is trying shoppable videos and influencer marketing.

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