Condé Nast, the publishing giant that owns magazine titles like Vogue, GQ and Vanity Fair, is closing its first major experiment in online fashion retail, a mere nine months after its high-profile introduction.
The company said in a statement on Tuesday that Style.com, a global multibrand ecommerce site in which it had reportedly invested more than $100 million, had ceased all trading operations. Effective immediately, visitors to that website will be redirected to that of its new partner, Farfetch, a rapidly growing online marketplace for high-end boutiques in which Condé Nast was an early investor.
The move is a stunning strategic backtrack by the publishing empire, which first announced a multimillion-dollar rebranding of Style.com, formerly the encyclopedic digital home of all Condé Nast runway coverage, in 2015. It also reflects the current turmoil in the glossy magazine industry, which has struggled to adapt to the digital age.