Luxury brands conglomerate Richemont, which is controlled by the Stellenbosch-based Rupert family, has secured a joint venture partnership with e-commerce giant Alibaba to launch a retail platform for the sprawling Chinese market. At the weekend, Richemont said the global strategic partnership would involve bringing the upmarket fashion offerings of its online retail platform YOOX Net-a-Porter (YNAP) to Chinese consumers.

The Far East hub is Richemont’s largest revenue area, with sales of €2.13bn being registered in the five months to end-August. The group said the partnership would entail YNAP and Alibaba establishing a joint venture to launch two mobile apps for YNAP’s Net-a-Porter and Mr Porter online stores. Alibaba will provide the technology infrastructure, marketing, payments and logistics to support the venture. In recent years, Richemont has been pushing its online offerings, and this effort was underlined when the group acquired full control of YNAP earlier in 2018. ...

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