Zoom to offer separate e-commerce service

Zoom, the web shopping and community portal jointly owned by Arcadia Group and Associated New Media, is looking to become a more independent e-commerce intermediary.

Zoom’s retail owner, Arcadia, has suffered from a falling share price as its mid-market brands such as Top Shop, Evans, Burton and Dorothy Perkins are squeezed by more focused retail rivals.

Zoom’s new strategy is to act as a one-stop-shop for high-margin brands which are looking for a bolt-on e-commerce facility. It has just signed a deal with Elle, whose 200 stores in France, the UK and Japan boast an &£800m turnover. Other specialist fashion brands to have signed up with Zoom include Ozwald Boateng and Pink Soda.

Eva Pascoe, who previously ran the Cyberia Internet café chain and is now joint managing director of Zoom, says the aim of this new service is to “handle everything for our clients.

“We always had this in mind when we launched Zoom a year ago, and it’s taken this long to get everything right. But we can now confidently offer a multi-channel digital retail service that includes ordering through PCs, digital TV or wireless application protocol phones.

“We will process, pick and pack the goods and have already handled more than 250,000 purchased items on the Zoom website, so we’ve had plenty of practice.”

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