Over the last 5 years, more than 120 startups have made contact with large companies in the fashion industry thanks to Atelier by ISEM, the first fashtech forum in Spain.
This week, Atelier held its Fashion Innovation Day 2022 in Madrid, inaugurated by Concepción Díaz de Villegas, General Director of Commerce and Hostelry of the Madrid City Council and leader of the Madrid Capital of Fashion project. “We are very well aware of the importance of the fashion sector for Madrid’s economy and visibility,” she said.
Around a hundred people attended the morning event, which began with a conference given by Marta Sánchez, Director of Digital Transformation at Vodafone, who spoke about the softwerization of retail. Sanchez provided data on pre- and post-pandemic consumption and surprised the audience with a fact, a priori, groundbreaking: By 2024, 78% of purchases will be made in physical stores. However, consumers do not want to go back to the stores as they did before but rather incorporate the advantages of online shopping: No queues, more product information…
“This is not about technology, it’s about customer focus. It’s about being where they are. For that, retail companies have to incorporate continuous innovation processes, like the ones used by software developers. Think of the business as a platform, where each area is a brand interface: stores are one, e-commerce is another, etc.”.
All that to adapt to the 4 post-covid consumer trends:
- Acceleration of e-commerce and e-service.
- Super-fast adaptation.
- A boom in local and mobile consumption.
- The streaming sale.
Next, a roundtable meeting took place about “Actual and future business opportunities in the metaverse for the fashion industry”, moderated by Chus de Río (Manager of digital channels in N-world), participated by Marco Hernáiz (CEO and Founder of Opi Digital Group), Darío Cortés (VP Business Development Optiva Media), Alonso Becerril Oriol (CEO of La Tecnocreativa) and Pedro Henrique (CEO of Urban Rooster).
The metaverse is the new form of communication in the virtual world, the natural internet evolution, which “is going to make Google look like Yahoo of ´97”, affirmed one of the speakers. A virtual place that increasingly resembles the real one and that opens the doors to immersive spaces, to a new layer of economy…
For the time being, the user experience is very limited and so is the business volume, but early adopters are already putting on their virtual reality glasses to enter the meta platform (which is still in a very early version) or buying Balenciaga sneakers in NFT format for their Fornite avatars.
Will non-gamers also join the metaverse? Today the technology is not sufficiently developed and wallets are not prepared, but everything points to the fact that in the following months this is going to change a lot. Moreover, the big battle in the metaverse will be over the operating system, “like when Google bought Android”.
A few years ago, attending a fashion show in virtual reality was a science fiction story, but now it is a true reality. The precursor of the big event, Decentraland, will execute this idea hand in hand with UNXD, an NFT platform with the best selection of luxury garments and culture. This collaboration will be called ‘Metaverse Fashion Week’ and will take place the week of March 24, 2022. Brands such as Dolce & Gabbana, Dundas, and Etro will participate in the shows, in addition to the inclusion of virtual-only brands such as The Fabricant. In addition to that, Tommy Hilfiger, Elie Saab, Jacob & Co, Franck Muller, Garrett Leight, and Cavalli will also be present. Also, on March 23, 2022, a virtual shopping mall inspired by the architecture of Avenue Montaigne in Paris will open.
A whole world of possibilities for the fashion business that left the Fashion Innovation Day attendees eager to know more and led to the elevator pitch, in which only the startups and advocate companies of this edition of Atelier 2022 participated.