Richemont and Alibaba Group have signed a global strategic partnership to bring the retail offerings of YOOX Net-a-Porter Group (YNAP to Chinese consumers.
Under the partnership, YNAP and Alibaba will establish a joint venture to launch two mobile apps for YNAP’s Net-a-Porter and Mr Porter for consumers in China, increasing the reach of 950 luxury brands currently distributed through YNAP in China.
Net-a-Porter and Mr Porter will also launch on Alibaba’s Tmall Luxury Pavilion, a digital platform dedicated to luxury brands.
The JV aims to sell to increase sales to Chinese customers whether they are at home or travelling abroad.
Net-a-Porter and Mr Porter sell watches from most Richemont maisons, plus a growing list of other brands including TAG Heuer, Zenith, Bremont and Nomos.
Johann Rupert, chairman of Richemont, said: “Chinese customers at home and abroad are an increasingly important customer base for Richemont and for the broader luxury industry. Our digital offering in China is in its infancy and we believe that partnering with Alibaba will enable us to become a significant and sustainable online player in this market.
“Alibaba has become the preferred online destination in China, with world-class teams in technology, logistics and marketing. Through this joint venture, we look forward to opening the important Chinese market to Net-a-Porter, Mr Porter and the luxury brands they offer their clientele. To this end, we will work with Alibaba to ensure Net-a-Porter and Mr Porter’s continuing expansion as neutral, open and sophisticated platforms.”