Amazon’s vice president of clothing and CEO of the Shopbop unit said recently that Amazon could launch a private-label clothing line as a response to fashion brands’ reluctance to distribute on the platform. “When we see gaps, when certain brands have actually decided for their own reasons not to sell with us, our customer still wants a product like that,” he said.
An independently branded clothing line would not be the first time Amazon is attempting to manufacture its own products. The e-tailer launched Elements Diapers in December, and was forced to discontinue after just two months due to complaints about product shortcomings. Considering Amazon has not been successful in the fashion area, it is likely a branded fashion line would have the same fate.
However, prestige brands should still work with Amazon as the e-tailer is not leaving them much of a choice. L2 data on Amazon finds that brands that don’t officially distribute on Amazon, have more of their products sold on the retailer through third-party retailers. However, those who do work with the e-tailer can make deals to limit unauthorized sales of their products.
Prestige brands are especially reluctant to make their presence on the e-tailer official, as shown in this graph from L2’s Insight Report on Beauty E.U.: Amazon.