Filippa K said the Scandinavian fashion house has entered China by launching on Alibaba Group’s Tmall, which connects businesses with over a billion consumers.
Stepping into the world’s second-largest economy is part of the Stockholm-headquartered brand’s international growth strategy.
Filippa K, known for its minimalism and wardrobe staples, believes its commitment to sustainable fashion will help it appeal to Chinese consumers. The brand uses organic cotton, recycled fibers and materials that promote animal welfare in its collections.
“The house has a unique position within high-end fashion, offering a distinctly Scandinavian design perspective that’s rooted in sustainability,” Filippa K’s CEO Rikard Frost said in a statement about the brand’s entry into China.
A Swedish native, Frost joined Filippa K last year with a mission to reboot Filippa K for the post-pandemic landscape using his experience in e-commerce. He spent over a decade leading the digital transformation of Acne Studios from a local denim brand to an international fashion house.
Filippa K’s international push comes as the climate crisis weighs on purchasing decisions worldwide. A recent survey found that 90% of Chinese consumers already know the importance of sustainable shopping.
About 80% of Chinese consumers try to avoid plastic materials and nearly half have purchased second-hand or organic clothing in the past two years, said consultancy Roland Berger who conducted the survey in collaboration with fashion industry trade journal WWD.
“There is a strong demand [in China] for timeless Scandinavian design and quality goods with a sustainability profile,” said Mei Chen, Alibaba’s Head of Fashion and Luxury for the U.K., U.S. and Northern Europe.
Female consumers in China are more willing than men to buy sustainable fashion products and pay a higher premium. However, the premium on eco-friendly goods remains marginal, said Roland Berger.
Alibaba is targeting Scope 1 and 2 carbon neutrality by 2030 and is working with global brands to offer more climate-friendly choices to Chinese consumers.
In 2014, Filippa K developed a circularity strategy that has guided its efforts of reducing, reusing, repairing and recycling garments to lower its impact on the planet.
Filippa K’s Tmall store opened in China with the Autumn/Winter 2022 and core collections of women’s, men’s, active and loungewear. Creative Director Liisa Kessler’s first collection for Filippa K, Spring/Summer 2023, will be available from November.
Kessler, a multilingual German/Finn, joined the brand from French fashion house Saint Laurent earlier this year, becoming the first successor to Filippa Knutsson who co-founded the brand in 1993.
Founded in 1993, Filippa K is majority owned by Novax, the investment arm of family-run business Axel Johnson.