Burberry has launched a virtual storefront on Chinese etailer Tmall as it looks to expand its reach within the country.
Tmall, which is part of the Alibaba Group, hosts more than 70,000 sellers and has more than 500 million registered customers, who in 2012 spent CNY200bn (£21bn) on merchandise.
The Tmall Burberry store opened last night (April 24), offering a range of items, including a bright red purse for CNY15,000 (£1,427) and a men’s heritage trench coat for CNY22,000 (£2,093).
“The new tie-up is a first for any luxury brand and reflects a shared commitment to offering Chinese consumers the best in luxury experiences across all of Alibaba Group’s platforms,” Burberry said in a statement.
It is understood that the move also helps Burberry control its brand by positioning itself on a platform that Chinese consumers know and trust, because of the plethora of counterfeits available in the country.
The announcement came as Burberry opened its new Shanghai flagship store at the Kerry Centre. The three-storey unit is the brand’s largest in Asia, although Burberry would not give specifics on the size.
The opening marked the start of a multi-year programme of investment activity in the city and wider region, with chief financial officer Carol Fairweather noting that Asia-Pacific was the best-performing region in Burberry’s most recent set of annual results.