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Primark’s web launch with Asos is a ‘win-win’

Primark’s decision to make its online retail debut by launching on Asos’s website has been  applauded, with industry figures hailing the move as a winner for both companies.

This week, 20 pieces from the value chain began to be sold through etailer Asos, heralding a tentative first step in the chain’s online presence.

Prices for the Primark items (pictured) range from £6 to £22, significantly lower than the etailer’s average selling price, which is around £26.

A Primark spokesman stressed the move was “a very limited trial” and bricks-and-mortar stores remained its priority, but hinted at a more significant online presence in future by saying it would “give the company some insight into online retailing”.

Sophie Albizua, co-founder of ecommerce consultancy The eNova Partnership, said it was a “win-win” for both retailers. “Primark dips its toes to test the waters of online while getting a front-row seat into one of the sleekest fashion dotcom operations in the world, and Asos tests demand for lower price-point products and learns for the benefit of its own stated ambitions in that category through its Style Steal brand,” Albizua said.

She added that Primark was right to take its time entering the online world.

Sanjay Vidyarthi, analyst at investment bank Espirito Santo, said for Asos it was “a logical addition that should drive traffic to the website”, but the etailer’s own label would remain “by far the dominant driver of growth”.

Eric Abensur, chief executive of ecommerce specialist Venda, said the move would “guarantee [Primark’s] products are seen by a high volume of consumers” but said it was no substitute for Primark having its own transactional website.

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