The key word is “timing”: e-commerce and second-hand are current and quickly growing markets, and it’s an area of activity onto which to focus. It’s not by chance that these matters are at the center of Kering’s digital strategy. Another key word is “pioneering”: import results are achieved only with a first-mover advantage, such as that of Gucci with WeChat. The third is independency. Because as explained by Grégory Boutté, chief client and digital officer of Kering, to MFF, every brand has the chance to play the digital market as it sees most fit. Including Bottega Veneta, which chose (opposite to the general trend) to remain distant from social channels.
Kering’s digital strategy
After one year of pandemic it is clear that the digital trend isn’t just passing by, nor it’s something to adopt in the future. It’s a structural element for the luxury market. “Our e-commerce revenue during the first half of 2020 went from 6% to 13% of the total in the last exercise – explains Boutté –. We reached 26% in North America. I expect e-commerce to accelerate in the first few months”. The topic also includes the second-hand market: let’s not forget that Kering has recently entered Vestiaire Collective. “in the next 5 to 10 years every luxury brand will need to have a resale program, in collaboration with other players or they will have to build it in-house – continues Mr. Boutté -. Have a “take-in” service, to get back the items that are no longer used will likely be a service that each luxury brand will need to offer”.
Kering’s manager points out that brands are allowed to act as they wish, even without following the French HQ. “The investment (in Vestiaire Collective) was done at group level – his words -. It means that brands under the Kering umbrella aren’t under any obligation to collaborate with Vestiaire or resale programs. That being said, it’s improbable they will ignore the trend”. The attention inevitably passes on Daniel Lee, main character of the latest months thanks to his choice of moving Bottega Veneta into an opposite direction. “Every brand is very indipendent – reassures Boutté -.Bottega Veneta has its special trendsetter view on the matter”. Kering though cultivates pluralism: “Gucci is once again a pioneer in our industry, as far as social media go – he concludes -: that’s also proven by the fact that it was the first to land on WeChat in China. What we have built is a competitive advantage
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