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Yoox CEO Federico Marchetti has got some pretty strong feelings regarding the relationship between luxury fashion and the internet. For one, he thinks Amazon should just forget about trying to get into the luxury fashion game.
"They [Amazon] are not the guys that I watch every day and I don't look at what they do and try to benchmark myself with them," Marchetti told Fortune magazine. "I really don't follow them. I really think that they are not competitors."
Strong words for a man whose company is valued at $605 million while Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, is alone worth $29.1 billion. Regardless, Marchetti thinks that luxury fashion is way too selective and customer-service-oriented for Amazon's accessible e-commerce style.
The man knows a thing or two about the online luxury fashion business. Not only did Marchetti pioneer Yoox.com a decade ago, when offering such high class goods on the lowly internet was less than desirable, but his company also runs the online stores for 37 luxury brands including Alexander McQueen, Brunello Cucinelli, and Armani.
In his world, the internet is a place where not accessibility, but selectivity, is everything. In the Fortune interview, he recounted his meeting with Cucinelli in which Marchetti convinced the brand to let him build their online shop.
"He [Cucinelli] asks my advice about distribution and I told him that the distribution on the Internet should be more and more selective because the Internet is a powerful media so the brands needed to be super careful," said Marchetti. "Just like luxury brands don't distribute in certain places and certain department stores, selective distribution can be achieved on the Internet."
· Yoox CEO: 'I was going to do the Internet in a beautiful way' [Fortune]
· The Pay Gap Between Retail CEOs and Store Employees Will Astound You [Racked]
· The 38 Essential Online Shops: Who Should Stay (or Go)? [Racked]