When New York Fashion Week takes place Sept. 14-16, it will coincide with the launch of CFDA’s new Runway360 digital platform. Powered in partnership with digital B2B wholesale solution NuOrder, Runway360 aims to translate every aspect of a collection launch into a virtual experience, from product presentations to consumer activations.
Designers who are on the CFDA’s official NYFW schedule will gain access to a modular, customizable page through which to showcase their collections. The portal will support experiential functions like AR/VR, 360-degree capabilities, live video streams, e-commerce extensions, consumer shopping features and social media integrations. In this way, brands will be able to interact with buyers, press and consumers all within one platform.
With physical events currently restricted, Runway360 is aiming to provide a digital alternative to staples of the NYFW experience. The platform will enable designers to host virtual press conferences, with press kits and show images, and they can include integrated shopping elements to enable direct consumer purchase.
“This transformational time in fashion requires innovative business tools,” said Steven Kolb, president and CEO of the CFDA. “Runway360 is more than a response to social distancing and restricted travel. The digital platform will help designers faced with short-term needs caused by COVID-19 and support future market weeks, including live fashion shows.”
While CDFA expects that most brands will adhere to a somewhat traditional showcase calendar, Runway360 will be a year-round destination that designers can activate as they wish. Designers will have an established infrastructure through which smaller collections or surprise presentations can be hosted. That ability to produce content and promote consumer engagement at-will could provide a way to maintain relationships with shoppers outside of the usual schedule.
Through the partnership with NuOrder, designers presenting through Runway360 can also take advantage of the platform’s virtual showroom technology. The company is focusing on both supporting emerging and established designers, with spotlights on rising talent and designers of color, and so is extending its virtual sales showroom in service of that.
In addition to the virtual showroom, designers will be able to engage in a fully supported digital market process. NuOrder is known for its wholesale business, and brands participating in Runway360 will gain access to the company’s digital linesheets, catalog capabilities and order management software.