Farfetch, the prominent luxury fashion marketplace, has recently announced its rescue by Coupang, the South Korean e-commerce giant. Coupang, listed on the New York Stock Exchange and recognized as one of the world’s largest retailers, intends to acquire Farfetch Holdings plc’s business and assets. With this acquisition, Coupang will establish itself as a leader in the global personal luxury goods market, estimated to be valued at $400 billion.

Coupang is a dominant player in South Korea’s e-tail market and operates various businesses, including a payments unit and a restaurant delivery service. The company has partnered with global investment firm Greenoaks for this acquisition, bringing significant financial expertise to the table. Coupang believes that its operational excellence and innovative logistics, combined with Farfetch’s prominent position in the luxury ecosystem, will create exceptional experiences for customers, boutiques, and brands worldwide.

The South Korean market holds great importance for Farfetch, as it boasts the highest per-capita spending on personal luxury goods globally. This acquisition will provide Farfetch with access to $500 million in capital, enabling it to continue offering exclusive brands and boutiques cutting-edge technology and connecting leading designers with consumers worldwide.

Coupang’s founder and CEO, Bom Kim, sees this acquisition as a transformative force in the luxury retail landscape. He firmly believes that online luxury represents the future of the industry, with Farfetch playing a vital role in this transformation. The goal is to provide the most elevated experience for the world’s most exclusive brands while pursuing steady and thoughtful growth as a private company. Coupang envisions redefining the customer experience for luxury clients across the globe.

José Neves, Farfetch’s founder and CEO, is enthusiastic about partnering with Coupang and leveraging its expertise in revolutionizing commerce to deliver exceptional service to brand and boutique partners, as well as millions of customers worldwide. The collaboration with Coupang, a respected Fortune 200 company, demonstrates their commitment to investing in innovations that transform the entire customer experience with Farfetch.

This rescue deal comes at a critical time for Farfetch, as the company was on the verge of running out of funds and its shares had taken a significant hit. The challenges posed by the luxury and e-tail downturn, alongside Farfetch’s own diversification efforts, had put the company in a tough spot. While the details of the deal have not been disclosed, there are still questions about the long-term involvement of José Neves, the fate of Farfetch’s headquarters, and the future of its assets like New Guards Group and Browns.

The acquisition has also raised speculation regarding Farfetch’s partnership with Richemont’s Yoox Net-a-Porter (YNAP), and it has now been confirmed by Richemont that the deal is off. Although specifics about these matters have yet to be revealed, Farfetch and its stakeholders remain optimistic about the future.

Useful links:
1. Farfetch Virtual Showroom
2. Coupang About Us