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JD.com signs “boundaryless retail” tech deal with Ruyi

By Danielle Wightman-Stone

10 Sep 2018

JD.com, China’s largest retailer, has confirmed that it has signed a strategic agreement to provide e-commerce technology to Ruyi, the owner of global fashion brands including Aquascutum, Cerruti 1881, Sandro and Maje.

In a press statement, JD stated that it will deploy its full suite of “boundaryless retail” technology, including smart logistics, supply chain solutions, big data-enabled inventory management, and membership systems to establish a retail management system for Ruyi’s subsidiary brands.

In addition, Ruyi will also deploy JD’s virtual and augmented reality shopping technology in its brick-and-mortar stores, to offer customers a seamless shopping experience.

The companies will also jointly build fashion and lifestyle “future of retail” concept stores in Beijing and Shanghai first, to showcase JD’s smart retail technology as part of JD’s ‘Retail as a Service’ strategy, where it offers its technology and infrastructure to retailers and brands.

The partnership will also see Ruyi and JD expanding their existing efforts to bring Ruyi’s portfolio brands to JD’s over 300 million customers. Ruyi already operates several flagship stores on JD.com, including Cerruti 1881, Kent and Curwen, and D’Urban, and will add stores for Sandro, Maje, Aquascutum, and its other brands on JD’s platforms.

The final initiative will see the two companies establishing a joint fashion fund to finance new initiatives and support up and coming designers and brands, however, the two companies didn’t share any details on when this will be launched or which designers will benefit from the new funding.

Commenting on the partnership, Yafu Qiu, chairman of the board of Ruyi Holding Group, said in a press release: “This wide-ranging partnership agreement will help upgrade Ruyi’s capabilities across the online and offline spectrum. JD’s unrivalled expertise in e-commerce and advanced logistics capabilities makes it a great partner for Ruyi as we take a world class fashion group into the future.”

Shengli Hu, president of JD Fashion and Lifestyle, added: “We are delighted to work with Ruyi to build out our vision of ‘Boundaryless Retail,’ in which consumers can buy whatever they want, whenever and wherever they want it.

“Partnering with Ruyi, a respected name – and rising star – in the world of global fashion, is an important step in expanding our luxury offerings for that vision.”