Modem interviewed Simon Lock, co-founder & Ceo of Ordre.com
November 13 2017
During Paris Fashion Week of September, dedicated to the S / S 2018 Women's collections, Ordre.com, the online Showroom platform, presented, in the Marais, the first edition of a new showroom concept : Ordre Live.
On the ground floor of the 113 rue de Turenne gallery, giant e.phone touch screens, to view the silhouettes of the showroom's collections and also see the textile's details, thanks to the 3D processes called ORB that they have patented. But also 360-degree capture cameras and their virtual reality headsets.
On the first floor the showroom space with the collections of Angel Chen, Freya Dalsjø, J.H Zane, Minyukim, Patricia Padron, Paula Mendoza and Goya. Buyers' orders were taken only on I Pad tablets via the Ordre online showroom application.
We then met and interviewed SIMON LOCK, co-founder whit KERSTIN LOCK & Ceo of ORDRE.COM.
Modem > During your professional career, what experiences have led you to imagine the concept of Ordre.com (platform) ?
Simon Lock > My career in the business of fashion has spanned the last 30 years. our companies have founded and produced a number of international fashion weeks in Sydney, Singapore, Hong Kong and Dubai, i have been a SVP at Img Fashion & Models and we have also operated our own multi label showrooms in New York, London, Beijing and Tokyo.
Our organisation has always been involved in selling wholesale collections of luxury ready to wear designers to retailers globally. we have been fortunate to experience first-hand many economic influences the industry has experienced including recently the impact of the digital revolution.
The simple fact is that the business of fashion continues to operate on analogue foundations, this requires designers to present wholesale samples in physical showrooms at various destinations around the world and requires buyers to constantly travel. It seemed logical to us with the development of recent technologies to create a new channel for the business of fashion that was based on online showrooms.
Modem > What are the characteristics and specific aspects, that makes Ordre.com different from other online showroom platforms ?
Simon Lock > ORDRE’s compelling competitive advantage is the digital assets we create on behalf of designers for our online showrooms. For buyers to be able to understand creative and complex collections of luxury ready to wear designers online, they need to be able to see all aspects of the product as well as an understanding of movement, drape and fit in addition to the normal line sheet information.
To achieve these, we have incorporated a number of new technologies both within the ORDRE.com platform and the image capture equipment we use, that incorporates both 360 view and virtual reality technologies.
Modem > In Paris you initiated the concept of ORDRE LIVE SHOWROOM, for the first of its kind. What led you to this experience ?
Simon Lock > ORDRE LIVE is our ongoing fashion technology showcase, and the inaugural edition was recently held in Paris. Each edition we invite a number of emerging designers that are part of the ORDRE designer portfolio to assist us in showcasing our technology both online and offline. Each designer has an online showroom using the complete suite of our technologies including 360 view images, 360 video, VR experience and designer video interviews. We then showcase their collections in our offline showroom using the ORDRE App and our life-size touch screens.
We had over 200 leading luxury retailers visit ORDRE LIVE this season and they were able to experience a demonstration of all our technologies and then view the physical collections supported by the ORDRE App and touch screens. This meant buyers could quickly and efficiently see every look on a model via our touch screens and then make their selection in the App allowing them to complete and submit the order when they got back to the office. The ORDRE system not only allows a buyer to order remotely when they can’t make it into a designer showroom but also makes their time more efficient when they do.
Modem > What is the feedback from this first Parisian experience ?
Simon Lock > The feedback from ORDRE LIVE in Paris was extremely positive. Everyone in whatever business they are in, is reluctant to change. When you are able to explain and demonstrate technology practically first hand, it makes a great difference. While ORDRE is an online ordering platform, our business is very face to face with buyers and designers.
Retailers loved our demonstrations; many experienced virtual reality for the first time. For our designers involved, our technology really enhanced the physical presence of their collections and this lead to a great sales season for all of them. We are progressively providing all 5,000 buyers in the ORDRE retail network a virtual reality headset to be able to view our technology and the first 200 were distributed at ORDRE LIVE.
Modem > Knowing all logic and problems, in our opinion, this concept is intended to be applied to all showrooms and salons. What is your opinion on this ?
Simon Lock > I believe overtime, all traditional physical showrooms are going to have to have an online presence. It is just not feasible that the industry can continue to travel in the way it currently does. Technology also needs to be used to create greater efficiency in the offline showroom as well.
Modem > Imagining if other showrooms intend to appropriate this concept, how would you collaborate with them on this subject ?
Simon Lock > ORDRE’s overall vision is as a “Technology company powering the business of fashion”. ORDRE is currently helping designers and retailers directly to do business. Our technologies however can be applied a number of ways to assist designers who want to establish their own stand alone online showrooms or multi label showrooms to go online. We have also had some initial discussions with some of the luxury trade shows to explore how we may also be able to assist them. Online showrooms are part of the future of our industry.
Modem > In the near future, considering natural development of showrooms online platforms, do you think that physical showrooms will continue to exercise in the same way in the fashion business?
Simon Lock > As long as designers continue to produce physical samples, physical showrooms will be a reality. An exciting development however, is actually the progress in creating virtual samples. Next season, ORDRE will launch their first virtual collection with a leading designer using the latest technology of 3D animations. The collections will be able to be viewed online in every fabric type and colour way.
Modem > Is there a risk that the increasing share of technology may interfere ruling the current system (discovery of a creator, diffusion through a showroom, distribution retailers) or replaced this system natural organization and consistent ?
Simon Lock > Technology is only ever going to allow us to have a better understanding and to be better connected. It will allow new emerging designers to be discovered by niche retailers or for huge department stores to rediscover brands they haven’t visited for years. In the process, it will save hours and hours of executive time to be put to better use……attending fashion week parties and getting to know each other better!!!!!