Catcha Media acquires Haute Group

Marking the company's foray into e-commerce, online media and publishing firm Catcha Media has acquired Haute Groupe, the operator of a members-only luxury fashion sales website, for SG$5 million. currently operates in Singapore, with Catcha Media intending to develop and launch its product offering in Malaysia and then across the region.

According to Patrick Grove, director of Catcha Media there is an enormous opportunity to leverage the companies' existing user database of approximately 9 million Malaysians every month and bring its product offering to a much larger, regional market.

Across the globe, luxury fashion sales websites specialising in current and post-season inventory have witnessed tremendous growth.

Companies such as Vente Privee in Europe and Gilt Group in North America have enjoyed tremendous success, turning over an estimated US$1.3 billion and US$270 million in sales respectively for the financial year ended 2010.

"Such business models are still nascent in the ASEAN region, with potential for considerable growth given ASEAN's relatively early stage in the development of e-commerce and its sizable consumer appetite for luxury goods," Grove said.