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London tube strike boosts online sales

Online retailers will be among the few grateful for the London tube strike today (July 9) if data from one fashion ecommerce platform is anything to go by.

Lyst, which sells products from more than 11,000 designers and stores including Burberry, Topshop and Paul Smith, recorded a 116% spike in site traffic from within the city by midday, compared to the usual Thursday morning average.

It said the majority of the increase was down to the amount of Londoners that opted to work from home or take time off to avoid the travel chaos.

Those that attempted to make it into work despite the industrial action contributed to 58% of visits between 6am-10am, with commuters presumed to be shopping while waiting for or travelling on buses sat in gridlocked traffic.

Lyst said it expects the numbers to increase further as the afternoon progresses towards 8pm, which it says is the peak weekday time for online shopping.

The platform, which notifies users when their favourite items are going on Sale, was founded in the US in 2010 and launched its UK website in March this year.Around 70% of its trade remains in the US, followed by 20% in Europe and 10% in Asia.

In April the business raised $40m (£26m) in its latest round of fundraising from investors including fashion house LVMH’s controlling shareholder Groupe Arnault. Other investors to date include one of Italian etailer Yoox’s investors, Balderton Capital, and early Facebook backer Accel Partners.


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