On Friday, January 28th, Farfetch announced its acquisition of Violet Grey, which would mark the luxury e-commerce giant’s foray into beauty.
Farfetch solidifies its standing as one of the definitive online marketplaces of luxury goods by expanding its offering – this time – with beauty. The platform has recently acquired Los Angeles-based beauty retailer Violet Grey.
Violet Grey, the self-proclaimed “Industry’s Beauty edit”, was founded by the celebrity beauty guru Cassandra Grey in 2012. Violet Grey’s editorial-driven approach to curating beauty, à la Kourtney Kardashian’s Poosh, has garnered reverence of customers globally – from A-listers like Emma Roberts and Melanie Griffith to the general public with an eye for luxury. Violet Grey followed the model of Parisian fashion boutique Colette – one of the pioneers of curating Indie brands alongside luxury monoliths.
According to Bain Altogamma 2021 luxury study, the beauty market is predicted to reach $69 billion by 2025. Farfetch’s acquisition of Violet Grey means that the fashion retailer will gain access to some of the under-the-radar brands not available in its newfound competitors’ stores like Sephora or Ulta, or the platform’s historical rivals’ like Net-a-Porter. Grey herself will remain at the helm of the beauty platform within Farfetch as chair and global advisor for beauty. She will also assume the leading role at the Farfetch-owned New Guards Group Beauty, responsible for incubating and accelerating young brands.
Some of the Violet Grey brands, however, will not be available at Farfetch – like Tata Harper, Susanne Kaufmann and Kosas, to name a few – as told by the platform’s spokesperson to Vogue Business. The retail model of the partnership will be in the shape of e-concession, which means each merchant will be responsible for their own inventory and logistics in exchange for the site presence and a commission from sales. Farfetch uses the same model for all its fashion brands, allowing them to partially avoid the wholesale-associated costs.