Joining forces with Kooomo extends Blauer's global reach
When Blauer was founded in Boston in 1936, as a supplier of high-quality clothing for the USA armed forces and Police & Fire Departments, its founders could not have imagined that at the turn of the next century their company would be a global fashion brand.
That was the vision of FGF Industry, a family-run Italian clothing business with a rich heritage in fashion. Its forward-thinking owner Enzo Fusco, saw an opportunity to take Blauer international, by retaining the DNA of the Blauer brand, and re-imagining it as fashion apparel for a worldwide market.
FGF Industry CEO Giuseppe D’Amore explains the beginnings of their Blauer story: “When FGF Industry acquired Blauer, we were determined to retain the distinct styling; zippers, elastics and reflective materials, and bring the company into the 21st century, building a high quality fashion brand with mass market appeal.”
By 2011 Blauer was operating 4 flagship stores across Italy and the Czech Republic. Business was booming but, in-keeping with their tradition of innovation, the company realised that they needed to build their online presence if they were going to continue to grow.
When Giuseppe and his wife Federica Fusco decided to launch the Blauer online store in 2012, they needed an eCommerce solution that would deliver a great customer experience, whilst maintaining its brand values. They needed a partner to integrate everything from web design, logistics and CRM, which would give Blauer an holistic approach to eCommerce with a consistent feel, both online and off. Blauer’s motto is “Uncompromising Performance”, and that’s exactly what they needed Kooomo to deliver.
Giuseppe describes the decision-making process: “Kooomo came recommended to me, as a scalable, future-proof platform that would allow us to align our online and offline strategies."
“What we got was so much more – a true e-commerce partner that understands how to achieve growth. Our online revenues are now into seven figures and we expect online to represent 15% of our business within 3 years”.
"Online fuels offline and vice versa, which leads to stellar performance and our sales increased by more than 30% last season compared to the previous year.”
Currently, Blauer invest around 10% in digital marketing and typically see up to 10 times return on investment. FGF Industry, who are owners of the Blauer brand, now have a workforce of 65, and a turnover in the region of €40m. They see the potential for online as huge and they are expecting to grow by a further 60% in 2017.
"We monitor customer reviews all the time, and constructive comments have allowed us to shape how we deliver a great online experience. They have also had an impact on our future collections and helped to improve our product descriptions. Most importantly, this has been a big factor in increasing our engagement and conversion rates.”
Blauer needed an international commerce platform that would work with its global vision: multiple currencies, tax rates and languages. “Within 24 hours you can get your site live in a foreign language.”
In January 2016, Blauer launched a combined SEO and AdWords campaign to drive growth in the lucrative German market. By optimising the German website, it saw a marked increase in traffic and AdWords activity contributed to a 30% growth.
Germany now represents 30% of Blauer’s market and it is the combination of online and offline (Blauer can be found in 250 German stores) that has helped build this success.