Yoox private label due soon, created using data and AI plus human touch

Get ready for an announcement about a Yoox private brand in the very near future. But this won’t be any old private brand, it will be one designed by the creative team whilst also driven by data insight and artificial intelligence that will inform the company about what its customers have been buying and just what they like in their fashion shopping cart.

Yoox has revealed plans to launch the private label that’s “generated by data but designed by our creative team”. Yoox-Net-A-Porter has ventured into private label territory before with its Mr Porter offer, but this approaches the subject from a different angle.

Speaking at Wired Smarter in London, Yoox chief executive Federico Marchetti said: “We didn’t want to create a collection that had been designed solely by data, but by using data we think that the creative team can better interpret our customers’ needs”.

The company is figuring out how it balances technology with the human touch.

“Man is about emotions. It’s about beauty. He is about feelings. The machine is about speed, information power and the future. Can these two worlds co-exist?” he said.

He added: “We must make choices to strike the right balance”.

For Yoox, this means that while much of the supply chain is heavily automated, it has always tried to add a human touch to an otherwise tech-driven service, “because the final delivery should be a childlike moment of anticipation and joy”.

For Yoox, the decision is not whether to deploy technology, but where. “This is only going to get harder as technology accelerates – it’s not always the efficient choice to use humans, it will probably be easier to let a machine do everything in the future. It’s a choice to stop ourselves from allowing technology to replace what we truly value”.

Marchetti predicts a future where clothing labels like ‘Made in Italy’ will evolve as new values emerge. As manufacturing becomes even more automated, “the human touch will become the ultimate hallmark of a luxury brand I believe that in the future there will be one label to convey quality – and that will be ‘Made by Humans’”.

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