Fashion brands and retailers facing the COVID-19: a Letter from our Managing Director

Fashion brands and retailers facing the COVID-19: a Letter from our Managing Director


LNB News

Our industry is still among the first to feel the impact of international events, and the outbreak of the Covid-19 is no exception. For the past few weeks, our clients have been facing appointment cancellations first in Milan, then in Paris, in particular from Asian and Italian buyers.

As such we observe two phenomena:

  • First, a transfer of mobile orders to web orders. Indeed, during fashion weeks, 2 orders out of 3 are usually taken directly on iPad in the showroom, compared to a ratio of 1 order out of 3 during the last women's fashion week FW20.

  • Second, the total number of orders is significantly increasing compared to the FW19 sales season.

If we could assume that in these exceptional circumstances, buyers turn to brands equipped with a remote order-taking tool, it is still too early to draw conclusions. We stick together with brands and buyers facing difficulties and guide them since the beginning of the epidemic, in order to reach and even exceed their objectives.

There are several possibilities for brands to keep providing their retailers with the information they need to place orders, and to obtain confirmation of their quantities on time:

  • Line sheet Excel and .Pdf: sales rep can generate complete and aesthetic line sheets in a few clicks from their back office on LE NEW BLACK to be sent by email to their buyers. Once the Excel line sheet is completed, the sales rep can simply upload it to the platform to confirm the order.

  • Product selections: brands have the possibility to prepare product selections, then send them to their buyers in a digital format to be confirmed online, or in Excel format to reimport, or in .Pdf format.

  • Line sheet “department store format”: department stores generally use their own order taking application, and need brands to provide a corresponding format. Sales rep can then download this special “department store” format in one click from their back office and provide it to their buyers.

  • B2B showroom: convincing a prospect remotely in BtoB is a challenge. Our clients use their BtoB showroom to display the identity and image of their brand, and to allow buyers to discover the entire collection comfortably. Buyers can place their order online by selecting product and quantity sheets and view the main themes by fabric or by looks.

"Our online showroom allows us to provide a positive and efficient sales experience for our partners abroad. We have been able to fully upload all our showroom-related assets online to make sure all the clients have all the necessary tools to place their orders smoothly."

Nadia Larochelle - Head of Sales, Ann Demeulemeester

For the past few years, orders are usually placed at the beginning of the season (70%). Indeed, men's collections and women's pre-collections are unveiled at the same time, and buyers tend to limit their trips to once per season rather than twice. Brands have thus started to develop or maintain commercial relationships through their online showroom, to develop capsules or in-stock orders throughout the year. The Winter 2020 season will nonetheless be remembered as a special one for our industry and trade between brands and buyers.

We express our full support to you and your buyers, and we stay at your disposal for any advice,

Romain Blanco, Managing Director 

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