Home » Naver, Musinsa clash intensifies in online fashion market

Naver, Musinsa clash intensifies in online fashion market

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Naver, Musinsa clash intensifies in online fashion market

Naver, Musinsa clash intensifies in online fashion market

Fila’s brand store on Naver shows no products. Captured from Naver

By Baek Byung-yeul

Naver and fashion e-commerce platform Musinsa continue to clash in a grab for online fashion business market dominance as some brands such as Fila and Puma that look to have closer relationships with Musinsa suspended the sales of their products at Naver’s online shopping mall, according to industry officials Tuesday.

Fila Korea and Puma Korea recently stopped the sales of their goods on Naver’s brand store, a market place where they sell their products through Naver’s online shopping mall.

At the brand stores, Fila removed all products. Puma’s products sold by itself directly on Naver were not searchable; only Puma products sold by other retailers were searchable.

Given their brand stores in Musinsa are operational, their moves are interpreted as an intentional withdrawal of their products from Naver, which holds an around-30 percent share in the country’s e-commerce market in terms of monthly active users.

The brands’ move toward Musinsa could be interpreted as the fashion e-commerce platform stepping up its offensive against Naver.

The start of the struggle between Naver and Musinsa date back to last year’s controversy over the sale of counterfeit products.

In 2022, Naver’s online resale platform KREAM stated that Musinsa was selling counterfeiting apparels through its Essentials brand. Musinsa refuted the claim but Essentials’ mother company Fear of God confirmed that Essentials items sold through Musinsa were imitations.

In a counter-response, Musinsa led the establishment of the Korea Brand Fashion Association consisting of 50 small fashion brands and initiated a campaign “Fake Never” and criticized online service operators like Naver and Coupang for their negligent stand on the increasing number of fake products on online malls.

The association said it is campaigning against online shopping mall operators, but considering that the campaign slogan sounds similar to Naver, it is also seen as an obvious criticism of Naver.

However, a fashion industry insider said Musinsa cannot be seen as a company urging brands closer to it to leave Naver’s store.

“Since Naver and Musinsa are in the online fashion business, they may have some overlap. Fila and Puma’s moves to withdraw from the platform can be read as their own choices,” the insider said on condition of anonymity.

Regarding the issue, a Naver spokeswoman responded, “No comment.”

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