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Condé Nast disposes of its stake in Farfetch

Lauretta Roberts
07 July 2019

Vogue publisher Condé Nast has disposed of its £234m stake in Farfetch and its chairman Jonathan Newhouse stepped down from the online luxury platform's board in March.

Condé Nast was an early investor in Farfetch and the two cemented their relationship when they did a deal in 2017, which saw the publisher's own fledgling fashion marketplace, Style.com, wrapped into Farfetch just months after its launch. Newhouse was then appointed to the board.

At the time Condé Nast and Farfetch said the deal would result in the publisher's global fashion content being connected to the Farfetch commercial platform. Farfetch also appointed Yasmin Sewell, the fashion consultant who was one of the leadership team at Style.com, but she has also since left the company.

According to The Sunday Times, Newhouse and Condé Nast, have been concerned at the marketing costs for Farfetch. In the three months ended 31 March 2019 the company posted a loss after tax of -$109m for the period (more than twice that of the same period in the prior year), while it showed a loss of -$30.2m at EBITDA level, which it said was in line with expectations.

Sales growth, however, has been strong with Platform GMV rising 44% to $415 million – or approximately 50% growth on a constant currency basis – during the same period.

The company has said that its investment in customer engagement is crucial to its future growth.

Farfetch was founded in London in 2007 by entrepreneur José Neves, who is its CEO and executive co-chair. It was floated on NYSE last year but remains headquartered in London.

The business also counts JD.com, Eurazeo, IDG Capital, FJ Labs, Jose Marin, Vitruvian and The Chaloub Group among its investors and it has recently landed a deal with luxury department store Harrods to revamp its online presence.

For more about Farfetch, read its in-depth profile in our master database of fashion, The Intelligence.

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