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A letter from NET-A-PORTER President Alison Loehnis…

Lifestyle

I hope you and your loved ones are well. I am writing to you as NET-A-PORTER turns 20. For a company that has always been about shaping the future of fashion, it feels like a significant moment.

I often reflect that I have a huge advantage in my role at NET-A-PORTER because, before I started here 13 years ago, I was you. That is to say, I was a customer right from the start.

I can distinctly remember opening the very first email announcing the launch of NET-A-PORTER in 2000 and thinking, “Luxury fashion, online. The dream!” And, because I have always loved being first, I ordered as soon as I could. The black box arrived amazingly swiftly, containing a Chloé dress that I still have – black silk, with a drop waist – and it was such a thrill. I felt like I was receiving a gift.

That’s the feeling we keep front and center of every decision we make. Because, 20 years later, first and foremost I am still one of you – a NET-A-PORTER customer. And I still feel the thrill.

We take the greatest pride and satisfaction in serving a community of incredible women from all over the globe. Delivering excitement, joy and the very best fashion in the world to your doors is what drives and inspires us. It is that connection that counts. You’re the ones we have in our minds and are the ones we want to impress: it’s the reason we come to work, and what makes us want to exceed expectations again and again.

That is why this letter comes with a heartfelt thank you for your loyalty. We might have been around for two decades, but we know we’re only as good as the last beautiful package we send out, and we don’t take your support for granted. Thank you in particular for your understanding in recent months as we had to pause operations to safeguard our people and deal with the coronavirus pandemic.

The ongoing crisis, and recent events surrounding the tragic death of George Floyd, have given us all time and reason to reflect on the things that really matter to us, both personally and professionally. At NET-A-PORTER, we constantly review what we do and how we can do better. We will continue to celebrate the joy, wonder and creativity of fashion, but we also recognize that we have a responsibility to use our platform to push for more inclusion within the fashion industry at large.

While our teams have long been focused on achieving this, and have made great strides, we want to reinforce our approach, and this month we will be introducing new ways to drive the change forward. An audit is underway of our casting and network of collaborators, and we are committed to supporting and stocking more black-owned businesses with a goal of achieving greater diversity among the designers we retail and the people we work with. Our relationship with you is vital and, as a valued customer, your feedback is always welcome.

I read the other day that the number 20 is linked to empowerment and a sense that we are capable of anything we put our heart and mind to, and that’s the message I’d like to leave you with today.

Thank you again for your support, your enthusiasm and for continuing to come back to us to find the very best. I look forward to welcoming in the next 20 years with you.

Best,

Alison