Benetton to launch European e-commerce site

Benetton: spring 2012 campaign
Benetton: spring 2012 campaign

Italy's United Colors of Benetton will launch its first ever e-commerce site this month, putting digital at the forefront of its strategy amid falling revenues.

The fashion retailer will soft launch the site in its key European markets to coincide with a product campaign due to launch on 15 August.

Gianluca Pastore, worldwide communication director at Benetton, told Marketing the soft launch will hit countries including Italy, France, Germany and Spain first as it considers an entry into the UK market.

Benetton is already seeking greater engagement with consumers through its website, which provides daily fashion suggestions.

The move comes as Benetton, which also owns the Sisley and Playlife brands, attempts to reverse declining revenues after it posted a 5.5% drop in first quarter group revenues from €453m to €428m.

Pastore believes there is a "huge space" for the brand in e-commerce and says it is supporting the opportunity with an increasing investment in digital media. 

Around 60% of the company’s media spend now goes on digital with the figure set to rise to 80% in the near future.

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