#CNILux Day 1: Federico Marchetti on the Limitless Possibilities of Online
Alice Newbold, Vogue Daily Editor, reporting live from the CNI Luxury Conference in Lisbon
Federico Marchetti, Yoox founder and chief executive officer of Yoox Net-a-Porter Group, revolutionised retail by bringing together fashion and the internet, two worlds that were once so distant from each other. He founded Yoox in Milan in 2000, based on the idea that he could convince designers to sell their end-of-season wares for a discount online. Launched months before Net-a-Porter, Yoox (the y and x represent male and female chromosomes in DNA and the two os are down to computing binary code) went under the radar in comparison with Natalie Massenet’s glossy proposition.
The 2015 Yoox and Net-a-Porter merger orchestrated by Marchetti and Johann Rupert, chairman of Richemont, was a game-changing fashion e-commerce deal that promised to shift the industry paradigm once again. At the time, Marchetti told the press: “Together, we plan to expand on our many combined successes and industry breadth to strengthen partnerships with the world’s leading luxury brands and harness a significant untapped growth potential.”
Now, three years, on, he tells Suzy Menkes exactly how YNAP will shape the future of luxury retail.
For Marchetti, it’s all about targeting and understanding the next generation of luxury customers. He breaks this process down into key points: localisation, inspiration, personalisation and mobile.
Firstly, localisation: “Customers want to read about fashion in their own language, but this is not enough. They want to be inspired in their own language through content in commerce.” The number of users visiting YNAP through Porter Digital has tripled in comparison with those coming in from The Edit three years ago.
Secondly, the personal relationship between retailer and consumer. The statistics show that the majority of customers shop for themselves, and that a quarter of YNAP sales come from personal shoppers, but soon Artificial Intelligence will make the shopping experience even more exclusive. Marchetti predicts AI will bring an end to the traditional homepage, as each customer will have their own homepage on their app. Mobile will make it all possible: 1 billion euros of sales are made on mobile, and 500 million euros are made on native apps, annually.
“Once you know your customer anything is achievable,” Marchetti summarised. “There is no limit to what your customers can spend and buy.”
The fourth annual Condé Nast International Luxury Conference is in Lisbon, on the 18th and 19th April. For more information, visit the website