AllSaints

The Winners

Yesterday fresh from the battlefield of the weekend’s Fashion Hackathon five teams pitched for the chance to be crowned top hack. With just 24hrs to polish there products and prepare to present in front of William Kim, CEO of AllSaints, Caroline Rush, Chief Executive of the British Fashion Council, Designer Lulu Guinness and an audience of over 350 fashion, retail and technology professionals.

All teams impressed with ideas ranging from enhanced fitting room experiences to creating unique content at the point of sale, but who did the top spots go to…

First Place: LOOP

Second Place: SUFFRO

Third Place: BESPOKY

All teams will have the chance to have their technology implemented in store and online,  the winning team LOOP will be taking a trip to San Francisco to meet with top industry players from fashion and technology. Not bad eh?

Congratulations to all our finalists!

 

Hackathon

Over this past weekend, May 10-11, 150 programmers, entrepreneurs, graphic designers and industry experts came together to build tech that could solve relevant problems in fashion & retail. It all started with a chat with the British Fashion Council, AllSaints and Mary Katrantzou – clarifying details on how the industry works, and inspiring teams to strive towards solutions that could be applied in the immediate future.

After working for 24 hours through the night, many going without much sleep, 30 teams submitted their ideas for judging – a 3-hour-long process that boiled it all down to five top teams. You will see the best ideas on the stage today. With your help, we’ll select the audience pick and the overall winner, which will be flown to San Francisco by AllSaints to meet with top industry players, and have its tech implemented globally by AllSaints, online and in store.

The Stats:

  • 30 apps were created
  • 200 hackers were registered
  • 150 participated until the end
  • 5 Finalist teams

 The Finalists:

BESPOKY – Stylist matching PROVENANCE – Content at point of sale LOOP – Recreating wish lists SUFFRO – Enhancing the fitting room NUDGE – Connecting brands to Passbook

HONORABLE MENTION: (not eligible for top prize)

ALLSAINTS ROW – 3D immersion brand experience NIXI – Inventory data in real-time

The Finalists will pitch on stage on Tuesday May 13, to a panel of top judges from the fashion industry at the Decoded Fashion Summit. 
Check out photos from the weekend here.

Decoded Fashion Meetup London April 2014

After launching in Paris, Dublin and Berlin, it was time to head back to London for our Meetup. Having recently moved into the old White Cube gallery, what better way to settle in to our new home in Hoxton Square, than a Meetup looking at “New Ideas in Ecom and Mcom”.

We kicked off with a discussion with three of our top partners for the upcoming London Hackathon and Summit this May; Gemma Ebelis from the British Fashion Council; Jen Rubio, Head of Innovation at AllSaints; and Chris Morton, founder and CEO of Lyst.

All speakers come from very different walks of the industry, all flying the flag for the importance of the Hackathon for the fashion industry. The discussion got the creative juices flowing and our minds bulging with ideas of what we want to create – so people get involved and make an impact!

We all know ecom and mcom without a doubt are inextricably linked, and Morton revealed that 40% of users experience Lyst on their mobiles. The use of affiliate marketing is often not ideal for online fashion retailers because of this, as it makes mobile shopping slower and less intuitive. That’s why Lyst created the universal checkout!

The BFC are just moving into their fifth pillar, and yes you guessed it, it’s digital innovation. Ebelis highlighted (the many) mountains that designers face when starting off, with the two biggies being business know how and in particular the offline and online time-to-market is crucial to a brand’s success.

AllSaints’ Rubio has deep knowledge of the startup world, working with Warby Parker before taking on her current role. She talked about the importance of startups understanding how the fashion industry, and businesses in general, function in order to develop the right technology. But she also stressed that there has to be an effort from the brands’ side – fashion brands need to make adjustments to their internal structure to be able to accommodate startups efficiently. “We found that, ultimately, it all boils down to this: startups need to think about how they can help fashion brands improve their customer experience”.

Up next our showcase of three startups: Nuji, Provenance and WonderLuk. Three very different concepts and we were impressed with them all! Nuji have created a very cool intuitive mobile app design that is fun and lets users do everything “with the swipe of one thumb.”

Provenance’s concept empowers producers and retailers to be more open about the things they create by allowing them to showcase their products’ stories. A social element also lets customers take a more proactive approach, by enabling them to contact producers directly on site and ask them questions.
And our final startup for the “Wonderwoman” in all of us! Recently launched WonderLuk were our final startup, a made-to-order jewellery brand that uses 3D printing.

See you next time London!

 

Decoded Fashion SXSW

Every year Austin opens it’s city to over 30,000 visitors for the notorious SXSW festival and last week we joined the lineup with our first event! With over 500 attendees crossing the threshold to take in three hours of panels, talks and face-to-face meetings at the Mentorship Hub. Here are the best bits from the conversations that took place.

First up, ” Onboarding Tech” with Amy Walker, Director of Online Marketing at Neiman Marcus, Jen Rubio, Global Director of Innovation at AllSaints and Will Young, Director of Zappos Labs at Zappos.com

All speakers emphasised their preference for finding new tech companies through networking and receiving recommendations from venture capital firms over receiving cold calls and emails.

Brands don’t want to be subjected to hard sales pitches that make unrealistic promises, but would rather engage in a conversation with a startup that has done extensive background research about the brand, has contacted the relevant department to pitch, and already has an idea about what the challenges may be and how they could be tackled. And naturally, if the technology is easier to onboard, then brands will implement it much faster. Young drives home this point “If you set the expectations we are doing something really interesting, that you might be interested in and we would love to learn what your challenges are […]’ it’s much more of a conversation than guns blazing sales pitching. And then I leave that meeting feeling like I wanna continue that conversation.”

And what technologies are brands looking for? Brands want to increase their conversion rates and their ROI in an engaging and sustainable manner, rather than invest in a fad that attracts media attention. What tools can help them seamlessly merge their content and their commerce? What can help them build an online community by telling their brand story?

Our second panel focused on content curation, featuring Rachel Tipograph, Director of Global Digital and Social Media at GAP, Kristina Di Matteo, Senior Digital Marketing Manager at Kate Spade and Katalina Sharkey de Solis, Director of Digital at Chanel.

Tipograph cited simplicity as key, it’s at the core of GAP’s brand and that filters into all of their processes, whether it’s creating content, or onboarding a new start-up. This also rings true for the Kate Spade brand, who have a tiny team creating all this fantastic content, but if it’s too complicated to onboard it just doesn’t work.

With luxury, Sharkey de Solis pointed out that social media channels engage aspirational and potential luxury consumers much more than they do existing consumers. The challenge for them  is finding a way in which to excite current consumers, which means, “We’re really looking for experiential technologies because with this very high-end consumer, they’re not necessarily wanting to engage with the brands on [social media] channels” – Sharkey de Solis

And, though traditional long-term branding campaigns may not be devised with specific measurement matrices in mind and may be ideally measured qualitatively, Di Matteo emphasised how difficult it is for brands to quantitatively measure the success of more fast-moving online campaigns. “If it were up to me, I would create the coolest reporting tool that would allow for me to understand everything that’s happening and have it really succinctly tie up into my [ecommerce] data because, at the end of the day, our goal is to generate sales, but also be able to tell a great story.” Anyone got an idea for this?

Last week’s event was a milestone for Decoded Fashion, and you can be sure to find us at next year’s SXSW.

For all the photos from the event you can check them out here, and for further SXSW fashion coverage take a peek at the FT’s feature and Stylus’s report.

Reported by Anna Abrell