Apr 17, 2020|

Luxury Brands Find New Avenue on JD during COVID-19


by Rachel Liu and Tracy Yang

Designer brand By Far recently opened a flagship store on JD and has seen 65% of their products sell out after just four days. About 90% of its products sold out after one month.

By Far is not the only brand that has launched on JD during COVID-19. Since the beginning of January, around 20 luxury brands have opened stores on JD, including the world’s oldest fine leather goods house Delvaux, Chanel-owned jewelry brand Goossens and luxury cashmere specialist Barrie, British luxury leather brand Smythson, cashmere knitwear brand Pringle of Scotland, and international designer brands MSGM and Proenza Schouler. To date, over 200 luxury brands from around the world have established partnerships with JD.

“The pandemic has affected many industries, and luxury is no exception. It has encouraged many luxury brands to attach greater importance to online.” said Kevin Jiang, president of International Business at JD Fashion and Lifestyle. “JD’s supply chain advantages, and the support we provide, have attracted brands to deepen their partnerships with us. In the coming months, we plan to offer more innovative programs to help brands deal with impact of the pandemic.”

Some of the support JD provides to luxury brands includes livestreaming and social e-commerce. The company is also exploring omnichannel solutions with brands in the near future. JD has helped Canadian fashion brand Ports host a nine-hour fashion show through livestreaming to present the new Spring-Summer 2020 collections from a dozen brands under Ports, such as PORTS, PortsPURE, and Ports V. The livestream resulted in sales of more than 10 million RMB in a single day. JD has also streamlined the process of getting stores up and running to help luxury brands open more easily. In addition, the company is providing a free service for luxury brands to launch Wechat mini-programs within just one week in order to gain more traffic.

Luxury products have sold well on JD during the epidemic, despite not being considered daily necessities. This is because more Chinese consumers are turning to channels within China to buy luxury products after the outbreak of COVID-19, and they want to choose a platform that they trust. According to Bain’s report, What’s Powering China’s Market for Luxury Goods, released in 2019, Chinese consumers’ demand for luxury products is surging – the report shows that China’s luxury goods market had experienced a second straight year of 20% growth.

This report also found that over 70% of luxury purchases of Chinese consumers occurred outside of China. With the restrictions on travel to the pandemic, it is more difficult for Chinese consumers to shop for luxury products outside of China by traveling on their own or through shopping agents. At the same time, the temporary closure of offline stores impacted luxury brands’ sales, as a large proportion of purchases still occur in brick and mortar stores. Even know, as stores have reopened, foot traffic is limited.


(liuchang61@jd.com; tracy.yang@jd.com)