Alibaba reportedly in talks for stake in Yoox Net-A-Porter

After the news of Chinese e-commerce giant bought a US$397 million stake in luxury fashion site Farfetch, Chinese e-commerce behemoth Alibaba is reportedly interested in buying a stake in online luxury fashion retailer Yoox Net-a-Porter, Chinese fashion website reported, citing sources.

According to a report by Chinese fashion website on 26 June, Alibaba had contacted Yoox Net-a-Porter over capital cooperation, adding it did not rule out buying shares.

The news has already had a huge impact on the financial markets, which bolstered the stock price of the Milan-listed Yoox Net-A-Porter Group up nearly 9% during the trading time in Europe. Reuters reported that traders have cited the Ladymax’s report as the reason for the share jump.

But a source familiar with the matter later denied the report. "It's not true," the source said.

Alibaba has long shown its interest in beefing up its luxury portfolio and attracting brands to set up stores on Tmall over the past several years. Even though Tmall is currently the largest e-commerce platform in China, its rampant counterfeiting problem has scared luxury players away.

Contacted by Reuters, Yoox Net-A-Porter said it did not comment on market speculation.

As the luxury sector in the Asia Pacific region has the brightest outlook around the world, Yoox Net-A-Porter has prioritised the Chinese market in recent years. In the first quarter of this year, its revenue coming from the Asia Pacific region went up 33% over the previous year and was largely led by demand in China.