Proenza Schouler partners with Tmall for live streaming and digital store launch – WWD

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On Friday morning, Proenza Schouler’s Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez showcased their New York-based label on Alibaba’s Tmall e-commerce platform with the brand’s first livestream experience as part of the launch of its digital flagship. Chinese this week.

As of Friday, Alibaba’s Tmall platform has more than 200 brands on its luxury pavilion; the Proenza Schouler livestream served as the brand’s official introduction to the platform’s Chinese consumers.

Additionally, May 20 – or 520, which sounds like “I love you” in Chinese – is a major shopping date in China and is considered a second Chinese Valentine’s Day. With many consumers in China still stranded and unable to physically shop and travel, due to the pandemic, the livestream served as a way to bring the brand and Manhattan’s SoHo, to China in an exciting way.

Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez showcase a look to host Zoe Zhang during the Proenza Schouler Tmall live stream.
Courtesy of Alibaba

The morning started at 8:00 a.m. EST / 8:00 p.m. GMT, with the host Zoe Zhang, co-founder of live business, business and technology solutions company And Luxe Inc.welcoming customers live in SoHo – stopping at Dominique Ansel Bakery for pastries and strolling the streets filled with luxury stores until meeting McCollough and Hernandez in their flagship at 121 Greene Street half an hour later.

From there, the designers introduced their brand – sharing background information and ideas – and welcomed the growing audience to their store, where they showcased a myriad of garments while explaining the construction, manufacturing, theory of design and the joys of their ready-to-wear and accessories. styles currently available for purchase at the Proenza Schouler Tmall store. For example, one model donned a collection ranging from Spring 2022’s Spring 2022 fringed yellow bouclé knit dress and hot pink pleated jersey dress to a sneak peek of feathered black biker shorts from their Pre-Fall 2022 collection, while that McCollough and Hernandez showcased clothing from their White Label and sustainable staple offerings, handbags and shoes.

Throughout the live stream, customers were able to simultaneously use the platform’s chat feature to ask questions, give feedback and connect with designers while making instant purchases – call it “see -now-buy-now, 2.0”. Additionally, viewers had the opportunity to win exclusive Proenza Schouler “prizes” (shoes from the brand’s Birkenstock collaboration, a PS1 Mini Crossbody bag, and colorful fruit-themed beach towels included) via Tmall’s mid-livestream Games “Raffle”.

By the end of the livestream at 9:30 a.m. EST, the brand had amassed 27,000 viewers and 27,500 likes, as well as hundreds of new subscribers to its digital store Tmall.

Lazaro Hernandez, Jack McCollough and Zoe Zhang show off the brand's Birkenstock collaboration shoes during the Proenza Schouler Tmall live stream.

Lazaro Hernandez, Jack McCollough and Zoe Zhang during the Proenza Schouler Tmall live stream.
Ben Hider

Prior to launch, Proenza Shouler and Alibaba bonded over mutual interest and worked together for a year on the construction and logistics of the brand’s foray into new territory.

“It was really exciting for us,” Hernandez explained after the live stream. “We have never had such a strong retail presence in China. People love the brand, but it was hard to get it out there, so it was a good time to explore that world and dip our toes into that market. It’s an exciting place – this is our first big foray into it with Tmall. We ship to China through our own e-commerce channels, but it’s so nice to have a digital flagship there.

“It’s also such a different ballgame logistically than the way things are structured, especially online. You really want to be on those platforms, compared to our [U.S.] Platform,McCollough echoed.

Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez showcase a look to host Zoe Zhang during the Proenza Schouler Tmall live stream.

Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez showcase a look to host Zoe Zhang during the Proenza Schouler Tmall live stream.
Courtesy of Alibaba

“With Alibaba and Tmall as partners, you couldn’t ask for anything better. They are amazing, it’s much better for us to be in China with them than to be here [New York]. Support and partnership are invaluable to us. It’s our first big step there,” Hernandez said, McCollough agreeing.

Going forward, the brand’s Tmall digital store will continue to offer customers new mainline, White Label, staple styles, accessories and footwear collections.

“We are going to start making a lot of exclusive products for Tmall and this region, which always helps the business. We do that with a lot of our partners across all categories,” McCollough explained.

“I think ultimately it would be nice to start having bricks and mortar, but that’s the first step,” Hernandez said, adding that the duo would be interested in follow-up live streams. Tmall to engage more and communicate directly. with their expanding Chinese customer base.


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