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World Retail Congress: Pure-play etailers 'are finished'

Pure-play etailers “are finished”, according to Vente-privée founder Jacques-Antoine Granjon, who told delegates at the World Retail Congress in Paris that the future of retailing is “cross-channel”.

During Granjon’s keynote presentation on Tuesday, the founder and chief executive of the secret sales website insisted that ecommerce was simply a distribution channel.

“In the first phase [ecommerce] was a tool but now it is back to what you sell. For me, it is the end of pure players, they are finished,” he said. He explained that Amazon was no longer a pure-play etailer because it had extended its initial pure play proposition by creating a marketplace for other brands and made products such as the Kindle.

Ganjon went on to predict that Asos would consider a bricks-and-mortar presence in the future, noting “the future is multi-channel and cross-channel”.

As a result he urged businesses to focus on their core offering. “You feed your traffic with your product,” he said. “Where you need to invest in is your brand.”

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