eBay Launches Full-Price Designer Boutique

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eBay Inc. is sprucing itself up with straight-from-the-runway designer threads.

The online retailer known for bargain shopping and auctions-style sales launched its Designer Collective Tuesday. The current-season, full-price shopping destination offers 16 high-end men’s, women’s and accessory labels, including Calvin Klein, Cynthia Rowley, Billy Reid and True Religion and more designer brands are in pipeline.

eBay grew into a multibillion dollar company as a marketplace for auction sellers, but now more than 70 percent of what’s available on eBay is sold at a fixed price. Each brand will control their inventories and manage their storefronts in the same manner as other independent eBay sellers. eBay will not own any inventory, but the company is expected to benefit by expanding its online presence to fashion-seeking consumers.

The Designer Collective is also a departure from the main eBay website with editorial-like imagery and sleek typography. Consumers can filter products through trend and occasion themed searches, like Little Black Dresses, Beach Weekends and Wedding Receptions.

Along the same lines as its competitor Amazon Fashion, which launched last October, eBay plans to add original content from fashion influencers and style bloggers.

However, some eBay signatures remain intact including seller-ratings, real-time inventory information and view counts. Shoppers can also save, organize and share products.

Today’s unveiling is considered to be a “quiet launch.” An official launch with more brands is marked for September. Currently the collective will only ship domestically, but eBay plans to roll out international shipping later this year.

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