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Italian ‘affordable luxury’ store Rinascente extends Chinese reach with WeChat On Demand shopping concierge service

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The growing importance of the Chinese luxury market and mobile chat channel WeChat has once again been reinforced by Italian ‘Affordable Luxury’ retailer Rinascente rolling out its On Demand mobile shopping concierge service onto WeChat.

On Demand was launched a year ago on WhatsApp to allow Rinascente shoppers to search for and request information about products in the Milan flagship store from anywhere else in the world. Now the company is aiming to extend the service to its growing Chinese customer base on WeChat – which has 1 billion active users per month, 83% of whom shop online.

The new service works in the same way as On Demand on WhatsApp, but also now adds in the ability for Rinascente to send out more information and promotional offers to customers.

The new service is being rolled out on line via a digital engagement program, and in the store with totem touch screens and QRcodes. Six 6 native Chinese concierges are ready to help customers during the on-boarding in the store.

“Our foreign customers account for about 50% of Rinascente’s total revenues. In particular, our Chinese customers lead our Top Nationalities ranking,” says Rinascente’s CEO Pierluigi Cocchini. “Their average spend amounts to around 250 € and continues to grow: in the first half of the year alone, we’ve processed more than 275 thousand transactions. Repositioning our Department Store towards affordable luxury has enriched and diversified our customer portfolio. The introduction of WeChat On Demand demonstrates how Rinascente is not only a place that offers a unique and gratifying shopping experience, but also a company committed to meeting the needs of all its target markets, surpassing expectations on a daily basis.”

Digital Retex is a partner in the project and is a trusted partner of Tencent, the Chinese group that is a global leader in digital innovation, launching WeChat in 2011. It develops and manages all the actions required to implement successful digital experiences online and in stores, and introduce European brands to China, harnessing the potential of the platform.

“WeChat On Demand opens up a whole world of new opportunities for the major brands in the fashion and luxury world”, says Andrea Ghizzoni, European Director of Tencent-WeChat. “It is a great honour for me to witness the birth of new, promising initiatives promoted by such highly qualified partners.”

Image: Rinascente

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