Designs by Fan by Fan, which is available at Shop ZaoZao
With the online retail landscape becoming more and more crowded, e-tailers need to continually up their game to create new and exciting ways to engage shoppers. The latest site that has caught my attention is not from the US or Europe, but is actually based here in Asia.
The brainchild of Vicky Wu (a Neurosciene graduate from Harvard) and Ling Cai (a fashion graduate from NYU), ZaoZao is, in its simplest terms, a crowd funding platform for emerging Asian designers.
It sounds complicated but it’s actually quite simple. Rather than hold stock, they invite designs to upload their latest designs online for a period of 21 days to see if customers – aka “funders” – are interested in pre-ordering them. If there’s enough demand, the item will go into production, with the customer receiving their final product within 4 weeks (shipping is free worldwide). If not, the items will not be produced. It’s a great way for designers to get funding and because quantities are limited, customers get something unique and exclusive in return.
Some products available on the site
So what type of products can you expect? Since Cai is a fashionista herself (she was an ex-buyer for Gucci and previously worked at Oscar de la Renta and Lanvin) there are some fun fashion and accessories brands, including spike rings from Singapore based Mandy Wu, edgy handcrafted leather bags from Artessorio and chic, streetwear inspired separates by Fan by Fan from Taiwan.
To date, the girls have only uploaded a few brands although 50 more are planned to go live. If you are based in Hong Kong, you can see some of the pieces in person at an exclusive ZaoZao pop-up shop at Kapok in Wanchai until October 18.
Best part about it is that everything is affordable, with prices ranging from HK$200 to HK$3,000. What better way to invest in Asian talent while taking home something unique for yourself in return?