Amazon Is Going Couture

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Amazon Is Going Couture
Maybe you've seen the ads--women dress in chic suits and dresses, with a name not usually considered in the same thought as high fashion along the bottom. Amazon.com, the online mega-retailer that has been credited with pioneering online shopping and destroying the publishing and bookstore industries, is gaining a lot of ground in the fashion game. 

"This is a transformative time in fashion and customers, more and more, expect to discover brands from all across the spectrum online," said Cathy Beaudoin, president of Amazon's fashion division.

While Amazon is understandably enthusiastic about carrying major designers online in their newly designed fashion section, they might not be able to compete with the likes of Yoox or Net-a-Porter just yet.

As Yves Carvelle, the CEO of Louis Vuitton put it: "this is a model of direct control that we pioneered, and I think long term it is the direction that most luxury ecommerce will take." 

In a statement that will make many fans and customers wince, the CEO of Alexander McQueen Jonathan Akeroyd was less reticent about such partnerships. "It would be naive to say we would absolutely never do anything ever with a company like Amazon."

Part of the draw of luxury brands and super-expensive designers is the exclusivity and experience of buying pieces that not everyone has access to. By partnering with Amazon, brands are trading this exclusivity for visibility, and it might do them more harm than good. That might not dissuade struggling luxury lines to give it a shot, though: Amazon has $5.7 billion in the bank to lure them in.
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