Online retailer Farfetch enters beauty sector with Violet Grey purchase

FILE PHOTO: A banner to celebrate the IPO of online fashion house Farfetch is displayed on the facade of the of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., September 21, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

PARIS (Reuters) - London-based online luxury fashion retailer Farfetch said on Friday it plans to purchase U.S.-based beauty retailer Violet Grey, marking its expansion into the cosmetics business with an eye to reaching younger consumers.

The move was announced as high-end labels from fashion to cosmetics double down on efforts to cater to rising generations of luxury consumers that are often more interested in experiences than accumulating goods and products.

"We've been thinking about beauty for a long time", Stephanie Phair, chief customer officer of Farfetch, told Reuters.

A previous attempt to expand into the beauty category around six years ago helped executives understand that it carried its "own requirements" in terms of operations, logistics and positioning, she added.

Farfetch plans to launch beauty products on its online marketplace later this year.

Violet Grey, which sells serums from the Dr. Barbara Sturm label priced at $300 and Chanel bronzer for $50, is known for building up its followers by offering advice and commentary from industry experts, as well as exclusive offers.

Financial details of the transaction were not provided.

(Reporting by Mimosa Spencer; Editing by Paul Simao)

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