Zalando is betting on logistics and subscriptions for its future

Zalando is betting on logistics and subscriptions for its future

Colossus of fashion and lifestyle as well as European leader, the Zalando platform presented the results for the past year: the gross volume of goods (gmv) increased by 34.1% to 14.3 billion euros, revenues are grew by 29.7% to € 10.4 billion, and the adjusted EBIT reached € 468.4 million with a margin of 4.5%. The forecasts (for the moment) are positive, given that for 2022 the CEOs forecast a gmv growth of 16-23%, to 16.6-17.6 billion, and revenues up 12-19% to 11, 6-12.3 billion euros - but, in fact, high expectations obviously cannot take into account the potential negative impact of the war in Ukraine.

Commitment to democracy At the press conference to present the results, a few days after the Russian invasion, the ad Robert Gentz ​​and David Schneider chose to immediately deviate from the program to declare that "as a company born in Europe, we believe in democracy, we are committed to peace and urgently want to see an immediate end to violence in Ukraine. Our thoughts are with the Ukrainian people, all those who suffer from this invasion and all those who are mobilizing to support it ”. While stressing that they do not have commercial operations, nor warehouses or logistics, active in the two countries involved, the CEOs explained that they immediately used their network of partners to provide not only humanitarian aid, but also directly support colleagues directly and indirectly affected, with their families.

Three pillars Therefore, without prejudice to the uncertainty for this 2022 that has just opened, Zalando chooses a strategy based on three pillars, customers (ie deepening relationships with users, and on a large scale); partners (so as to become a platform that can also provide services) and strengthen sustainability initiatives.

When to the first point, in 2021 Zalando acquired over 10 million new customers for a total of 48 million active buyers in 23 markets (of which six launched last year: Croatia, Estonia, Latvia , Lithuania, Slovakia and Slovenia). The key to deepening the relationship, they explain, will increasingly be the Zalando Plus program (extended to Italy last year), a membership with an annual fee that offers a series of services (for example some advantages on shipping) - which means that these are users who, on average, spend three times more than non-registered customers: the goal is to double their number, which today has exceeded one million, by the end of 2023.

As for partner, the group works on a program dedicated to them, which allows them to make the most of the Zalando logistics, that is, the brand partners will be able to use the giant's network also for their own direct sales channels, and transform Zalando into a logistics partner, so as to use the warehouses even the products that do not sell on the platform. Finally, sustainability: not just paper packaging and renewable energy sources. The ad explain: “To address the global challenge of plastics, we want to test new materials and find a suitable replacement for the single-use plastic bags that industry uses to protect products along the entire supply chain.”

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