Amazon launches local fashion offering

Amazon Australia has launched a new storefront featuring more than 150 local fashion brands and hundreds of international fashion brands, with a collective range of tens of millions of products.

Dubbed The Local Fashion Store, the range includes brands that have been available on the site for some time already, such as Bonds and Aquila, as well as brands that appear to have been newly added.

Aligned with the launch, the marketplace giant has announced a new award that will give 15 up-and-coming Australian brands the opportunity to win a $75,000 marketing package to accelerate their growth.

Some of the contenders include 22-year-old Melbourne brand Wild Rhino, board shorts brand The Critical Slide Society, and sister brands, From St Xavier and Sol Sana, whose fashion forward accessories and footwear offerings have gained a global following. The winner will be chosen by customer vote.

“We are really excited to be empowering some brilliant home grown talent by putting them front and centre on our fashion store.  We know Aussies love to shop local and we want to help them do just that with our Amazon Fashion 2018 Local Brand Award and The Local Fashion Store,” Angela Langmann, Amazon Australia’s head of fashion, said.

Focus on fashion

Amazon in recent years has made a concerted effort to improve its fashion offering by bringing in-demand brands like Nike onto the platform, as well as upping the style factor of its private label brands. In the UK last year, Amazon launched Find, a fashion-forward line of apparel and footwear for men and women that is reminiscent of an Asos or Topshop offering.

Why is Amazon interested in fashion?  The global apparel and accessories market is worth more than US$1 trillion ($1.3 trillion), according to Instinet analysts, with higher margins than categories like electronics or food.

According to the book, The Everything Store: The Age of Amazon and Jeff Bezos, Jeff Bezos told Amazon employees in 2007 that “in order to be a two-hundred-billion-dollar company, we’ve got to learn how to sell clothes and food”.

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