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Avenue 32 facing challenges, puts itself up for sale.
The online luxury retailer founded eight years ago by Roberta Benteler is offering itself for sale after a “strategic review of the business earlier this year,” according to a statement from the company. According to market sources, the company was underperforming.
“Upon the conclusion of the sales process, I look forward to perusing individual projects and continuing to work with the innovators of this ever-inspiring category,” said Bentler. Known for championing emerging designers, Avenue 32 now operates mostly on a wholesale model and brought on Liberty head of fashion buying and merchandising Stephen Ayres as fashion director in 2015.
The news comes amidst a luxury e-commerce market that is growing fast, but becoming increasingly crowded and competitive, as new entrants like LVMH’s 24 Sèvres prepare for battle with major platform players like Farfetch, traditional e-tailers like Yoox Net-a-Porter and Matches Fashion, and luxury incumbents like Neiman Marcus. The portion of personal luxury goods purchases that happen online — now about 7 percent of total — is expected to hit 20 percent by 2025, according to Bain & Company. — Chantal Fernandez
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