Fashionphile lays down stakes in Manhattan with new authentication center and showroom
Fashionphile is claiming more ground for its pre-owned luxury goods. The Carlsbad, California-based e-commerce pioneer, founded in 1999, has opened a 60,000-square-foot 'Authentication Center & Showroom' in New York City, located in the Starrett-Lehigh building in West Chelsea. The timing comes when the company is healthy and profitable, bringing in $450 million and $500 million GMV in 2021.
The expansive facility with views of the Hudson River will serve as an authentication of the luxury goods resale site and a space for the public to shop goods in person, sell their inventory and pull back the curtain on the process of cultivating the best second-life goods. Names such as Hermès, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Rolex, Prada, Cartier, and Patek Philippe are a regular part of the brand's stock.
According to Sarah Davis, founder and president, a visitor to the center may experience a jeweler at work refreshing a piece, for example, something that proves the category's sustainability.
"A Cartier Love bracelet or a Van Cleef necklace can be used for hundreds of years. After our bench team professionally polishes each piece and tightens all the diamond facets before a sale, it's indistinguishable by most everyone but a jeweler with a scope from brand new," she said.
Research shows pre-owned watches have gained momentum. Davis backs this up with stats. "Fashionphile more than doubled the number of watches sold from 2019 to 2020, and the trend continued in 2021, selling nearly 54% more watches in 2021 than in 2020," she notes.
"The prices of watches also increased as the revenue from watches was up 75% from 2019 to 2020 and more than doubled in 2021."
For the ever-growing circle of watch enthusiasts, it will also be a place to get up close and personal with finely crafted timepieces.
The all-in-one East Coast headquarters will house the company's operations, including expert authentication, shipping and receiving, warehousing, a photo studio, and a high-security, climate-controlled storage area called 'The Cage', which will house up to 15,000 luxury handbags and accessories at any given time, including the most extensive collection of Hermès Birkin bags in the world. The center will also feature eight procurement offices where customers can sell their items to Fashionphile.
Previously in 2018, Fashionphile opened a Madison Avenue showroom to showcase its wares. In addition to Carlsbad, there is an expansive distribution center in Moonachie, NJ; two technology offices in Los Angeles and Provo, Utah; and is the exclusive e-commerce partner of Neiman Marcus.
"After more than two decades of tremendous growth, Fashionphile is thrilled to expand our operations to the East Coast and open a corporate authentication center and showroom for our customers in the heart of New York City," said Ben Hemminger, CEO of Fashionphile.
"We pride ourselves on providing best-in-class service to our customers. This move enables us to expand our capabilities even further as the leading e-commerce company for ultra-luxury accessories."
Empire State Development offered Fashionphile $3.5 million in performance-based Excelsior Jobs Program tax credits over the next ten years in exchange for the company's job creation commitment of nearly 150 new, high-paying jobs. The project is expected to be complete by the end of 2025.
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