The already burgeoning off-price sector could accelerate with B-to-B technology being introduced to automate how buyers procure excess inventory from brands.The new platform, called InTurn, has attracted some high-profile industry investors — Ken Seiff, founder of Bluefly, and Silas Chou, who backed the Michael Kors and Tommy Hilfiger businesses.In addition, Kirsten Green of Forerunner Ventures led a $3.6 million round of financing that included Seiff’s Beanstalk Ventures seed investment firm; Novel TMT, which is Chou’s family’s technology-investment arm; Lerer Hippeau Ventures; Bobby Lent, cofounder of Ariba, and T5 Capital.“We are redefining an area of retail that’s been very manual and outdated,” Ronen Lazar, InTurn’s chief executive officer and cofounder, told WWD. “Instead of taking days or weeks to assemble the offer, it can now take minutes. It improves the work flow on both sides, making things happen faster.”“While nearly every aspect of the retail experience has been automated, the sellers and buyers of excess inventory have been completely ignored,” Seiff added. “Transactions between the sellers and buyers have been run on Excel spreadsheets for 40 years. This is the first big innovation in this space since Microsoft Excel.”According to the executives, InTurn eliminates the manual labor involved in creating spreadsheets; sorts by classification; shows sizing and color information; indicates quantities, suggested retail prices, wholesale prices, new asking prices and, in effect, creates “private, curated showrooms for retailers” that give clear reads on the offer.InTurn lists purchasing rules, such as whether you can buy all of the inventory or part of it, and for how long the offer stands; geographic restrictions on where the product can sell, and calendar restrictions on when to start and stop selling the products. In addition, there’s a margin analyzer that calculates purchase prices to get the desired margins. Frequently, buyers are writing orders without product pictures, descriptions, UPCs, color codes and country-of-origin information; however, InTurn is designed to provide all that. It’s cloud-based (nothing needs to be installed), it’s mobile ready, and it works on any kind of device.According to InTurn officials, each year an estimated $250 billion of off-price inventory is sold globally. The introduction of InTurn is timely, considering Nordstrom Rack, Saks Off-5th, Bloomingdale’s, Century 21 and T.J. Maxx are aggressively expanding their outlet fleets, while Macy’s is considering opening outlets for the first time. But getting the inventory on the selling floors is delayed by manual, inefficient tools and processes, which means brands are stuck with merchandise longer, leading to steeper markdowns, and off-price buyers can’t thoroughly analyze the inventory.“Brands have been selling their excess inventory to retailers in linear fashion using Excel spreadsheets for too long,” Lazar said. “It’s archaic and massively inefficient. Buyers have been handcuffed to buying what they are offered, not what they want. And because selling off price is a by-product of their core business, brands end up selling to buyers who may not be the optimal buyers for their inventory. This is costing both sides billions of dollars a year,” said Lazar. “There’s a tremendous amount of money left on the table.”InTurn executives said the technology has been in beta testing with some major brands and retailers since last fall, though they declined to mention who they were. Lazar has assembled a team that includes Michael Newman, previously vice chairman, chief operating and chief financial officer of Ralph Lauren, and David Margolis, founder and former president of The TJX Companies’ Winners division, as strategic advisers.
@chanel and @pharrell dropped what’s being dubbed as the world’s most exclusive sneakers yesterday. The Adidas Originals NMD Hu, which Williams designed in collaboration with Chanel and @adidasoriginals, has a waiting list of over 120K people who pre-registered online at chanelatcolette.fr –– and only 500 pairs are on sale. The singer predicted the resale value of the shoes could reach $40K. Read the full interview on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdfashion (📷: Dominique Maître)
@imanshumpert is diving deeper into his creative endeavors and relaunching his clothing line, Post 90s, and is helping to raise money for the hurricane victims in St. Maarten with a jersey he’s designed with his brother. The Cleveland Cavaliers player talked to WWD about kneeling during the national anthem, working with fashion brands and how he wants to be more than an @nba player. Read the interview on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
Not only does #TheProfit return to CNBC tonight, but @marcuslemonis has launched @shopmarcus, a new shopping and lifestyle retail experience in Aspen and Chicago, with more locations to come. The retail stores offer in-store stylists and a variety of contemporary womenswear selections.
“It’s life, I’m going to face it,” @mingxi11 sighed. “I fell, but you know, I think the most important thing is that I get back up. I had the love, the help from my sister — the girl next to me Gizele [Oliveira] — she’s so nice. When I went backstage everybody was trying to comfort me like ‘Oh Ming, it’s OK.’ I’m really, really touched. I think it’s them who gave me the courage to go back on stage for the finale,” Xi told WWD of her fall at the @victoriassecret fashion show. (📷: David Fisher) #wwdfashion #vsfashionshow #victoriassecret
@louisvuitton tapped @therealpeterlindbergh for its latest city-centric photo book, which is part of a series called Fashion Eye. The primarily black and white book captures the spirit of Berlin in 57 images shot between 1989 and 2019. “Berlin is an inspiration for me, more than a city. I mean @millajovovich is simply Berlin!” said Lindbergh. #wwdfashion
“You know, I think audiences expect a certain performance so I have to deliver to them what they’re expecting to a certain degree. But I’m also a different actor and a different person, I have my own spin on the character,” says @noahegalvin of his takeover of the leading role in “Dear Evan Hansen” following the departure of @bensplatt, who originated the role. Read WWD’s interview with the 23-year-old actor on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
For pre-fall 2018, @etro created richly-colored wonderland, using tapestries, textiles and wallpapers from the Eastern world at large. The line featured floral and graphic prints and jacquard motifs, like this two-piece look featured here. #wwdfashion (📷: Giovanna Pavesi)
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)