Zalando is expanding in Europe

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Widely known a German fashion vendor and marketplace, @Zalando is actually present in many European nations, including the UK, and it’s now looking to expand further over the next few months as it increasingly finds itself in stiff competition with the behemoth Amazon.

20 million active shoppers

In their report for the first quarter of 2017, the company reported it now has 20 million active buyers (up from 15 million in 2014). Zalando also report that customer loyalty is increasing.

They posted revenues up 23% year on year to 980 million Euros. They maintain that full year growth will be between 20 and 25%. But profitability remains a focus. Of those revenues, they declared a 20 million Euro profit and hope to maintain a 5-6% margin in 2017. Co-founder Rubin Ritter says “Our main priority is still a profitable growth. We will continue to strive for a larger market share and more European customers. We will also continue to invest in customer experience, technology and logistics.”

Nordic expansion

One area of investment for Zalando is the Nordics. They’ll be opening a new fulfilment centre in Brunna near Stockholm in the next few months to serve Sweden, Denmark, Finland and Norway. Kenneth Melchior of Zalando says: “Ecommerce in the Nordics is mature and developing fast. This is why we are investing in establishing a new fulfillment center and extending our selection of more than 100 Nordic brands. Having this setup in place, we are also thinking of future test pilots for innovative services such as return on demand.”

When the 30,000 sqm fulfillment center is operational, customers will get purchases more quickly. It will enable next day deliveries in Stockholm, Copenhagen, Helsinki and Olso. There is also potential for same day delivery for same day delivery in Stockholm.

Experiments with delivery in Belgium

Convenience are of particular interest when it comes to fashion and apparel and returns are also part of that sector. Zalando has hooked up with start-up Parcify in Belgium. They send packages to the customer location based on geolocation rather than address so you can get that exciting purchase into your hot little hands regardless of whether you’re at home or elsewhere. And in the first quarter they launched “Zalando haalt” (Zalando picks up) which is a trial to pick up returns direct from the customer.

So it’s all going great guns at Zalando. Are you a buyer or seller at Zalando? How does it work for you?

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