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Cartier partners with Alibaba's Tmall for China e-commerce


CARTIER International SNC, or simply Cartier, is a French luxury goods conglomerate which designs, manufactures, distributes, and sells jewellery and watches. Founded by Louis-François Cartier in Paris in 1847, the company remained under family control until 1964. The company maintains its headquarters in Paris, although it has been a wholly owned subsidiary of the Swiss Richemont Group. Cartier operates more than 200 stores in 125 countries, with three Temples (Historical Maison) in London, New York, and Paris.

Cartier is regarded as one of the most prestigious jewellery manufacturers in the world. In 2018, it is ranked by Forbes as the world's 59th most valuable brand. Cartier has a long history of sales to royalty. King Edward VII of Great Britain referred to Cartier as "the jeweller of kings and the king of jewellers." For his coronation in 1902, Edward VII ordered 27 tiaras and issued a royal warrant to Cartier in 1904. Similar warrants soon followed from the courts of Spain, Portugal, Russia, the House of Orleans, and so on.


Cartier is the newest addition to the Tmall Luxury Pavilion - Alibaba's dedicated e-commerce site for luxury brands retailing in China.


The luxury jewelry brand will operate a flagship boutique through the Tmall Luxury Pavilion, offering all of its product categories including jewelry, timepieces and accessories. To commemorate the launch of its online boutique, Cartier is offering two pieces exclusive to Tmall: the new Juste un Clou small model bracelet with diamonds and the new Guirlande chain wallet bag.


“The Tmall Flagship boutique marks a milestone within the Maison’s longstanding presence in China, reflecting the inheritance of the pioneering spirit embedded in the Maison’s DNA," Cyrille Vigneron, president and CEO of Cartier International, said in a statement. "Given the increasingly complex e-commerce landscape in China, this strategic launch will provide significant opportunities for Cartier to embrace China’s fast-moving retail environment in order to further strengthen our commitment to our Chinese clients.”


Cartier first launched e-commerce business in China in October 2015 with an official Chinese website. Its partnership with Tmall will expand its digital presence in the region and allow the brand to better serve customers in new and innovative ways.


Tmall consumers will be able to access Cartier's signature services such as product engravings and gift packing, while also utilizing Tmall co-services like interest-free installment payments.


"Alibaba is committed to unlocking new value for brands. In today’s luxury landscape, it is critical to engage with both Gen Z and classic luxury consumers, and providing consumers with the most personalized experience is a crucial step for the growth of luxury brands," commented Mike Hu, Tmall Fashion's general manager. "As such, Cartier’s Tmall flagship boutique will adopt the new Tmall Flagship Store 2.0 model, providing a virtually perfect brand experience for its targeted consumer groups. Looking forward, we will help Cartier leverage Alibaba’s Business Operating System to further upgrade its digital strategy."


Maybe some people don't know what e-commerce platform Tmall is, I hope the following Wikipedia content can help you.


Tmall.com, formerly Taobao Mall, is a Chinese-language website for business-to-consumer (B2C) online retail, spun off from Taobao, operated in China by Alibaba Group. It is a platform for local Chinese and international businesses to sell brand name goods to consumers in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan. Being the world's second biggest e-commerce website after Taobao, it has over 500 million monthly active users, as of February 2018. It is the world's third most visited website according to Alexa.

Alipay, an escrow-based online payment platform owned by Alibaba Group, is the preferred payment solution for transactions on Tmall.com.

As on Taobao Marketplace, the C2C e-commerce platform under Alibaba Group, buyers and sellers can communicate prior to the purchase through AliWangWang, its proprietary embedded instant messaging program. It has become a habit among Chinese online shoppers to “chat” with the sellers or their customer service team through AliWangWang to inquire about products, engage in bargaining, etc. prior to purchase.

Unlike online sales on marketplaces like Amazon, the operation of a TMall shop requires a specialized and dedicated cross-functional team. Such a team can either be employed by the merchant inhouse or, as in most cases, is managed through a certified Tmall Partner Agency ("TP") which operates the store on an ongoing basis on behalf of the shop owner.



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