Will Reliance IMG Enter Ecommerce Through Its Newly Launched Fashion Portal ‘Voice of Fashion’?
Brick-and-mortar stores the world over are upping their game by providing online options to their shoppers. Whether it is global fashion stores, like Morning Lavender, Forever 21, and Asos, or desi ones like, AM:PM, Ogaan, and Kimaya, most fashion boutiques have flourishing online portals. E-tail is indeed catching up.
A recent KPMG India report, ‘Eliminating Friction in Fashion Path to Purchase,’ says mobile phones could reduce media friction, helping brands with sales opportunity worth approximately USD 5 billion for apparels and USD 9 billion for accessories.
According to this study, currently, almost half of apparel purchases are influenced by mobile, and by 2022, almost two out of three apparel purchases, and more than 70% of accessory purchases, will be influenced by mobile.
Keeping this data in mind, what if India’s most successful telecom company launched a fashion portal? Yes, there would be no stopping the revenue flowing from that combination, and not just for now but for quite some time into the future. IMG Reliance has done just that by launching a fashion portal called ‘thevoiceoffashion.com’.
In the beginning, the fashion web site aims to cover every day content, fashion traits, and video collections regarding high fashion in India. It has also joined hands with International Institute of Fashion Design (INIFD), Good Earth, House of Anita Dongre, Apple Music, and Fashion Revolution to bring fashion news and trends to its customers.
Shefalee Vasudev, Editor of The Voice of Fashion, said in a press release in Outlook India, “The editorial viewpoints will be gender equal, inclusive and sensitive with an unbiased view of people and the world and thus as its microcosm the fashion and design industry. The Voice of Fashion aims to be a one stop platform for a representative overview of fashion-creation, curation and consumption and hopes to track and lead fashion conversations in India.”
While the initiative is not yet a full-blown fashion e-commerce platform for shoppers, and there hasn’t been any announcement to that effect yet, Reliance can be predicted to soon venture into the world of e-commerce via fashion.
The government of India’s last draft on e-commerce policy has been severely criticized by the likes of Amazon and Flipkart, because of its barring of group companies of e-commerce players from “directly or indirectly influencing” sale prices. This can prove to be restricting for e-tail majors with subsidiaries. Both the e-commerce rivals have requested the government for a revised version of the draft. Incidentally, representatives from Reliance were on the panel working on the draft. If the current draft is approved, the telecom giant will gain.
With the ‘The Voice of Fashion’ application, users have access to fashion journalism via their mobile devices. In fact, the app has been designed specifically for mobile device users. The app introduces imaginative stories, profiles visionary stylists, talented designers, arts, handlooms, craftsmen, covering the latest trends in the world of fashion. Users will be able to download it free of charge from the iTunes App Store. Users can share photos and news stories while receiving alerts regarding news in the world of fashion.