While Nigeria has its fair share of financial issues, luxury rules supreme in the city of Lagos, a place where the rich and famous live, work and spend massive amounts of money on designer goods. There are even rumors that a Nobu will be opening at some point.
As an article by Forbes detailed, when Nigeria’s wealthy want to spend, they often turn to the services of Polo Luxury. The Nigeria-headquartered holding company operates across the West Africa region through multiple luxury retail outlets. Polo is the only authorized retailer in the region for brands including Rolex, Hublot, Cartier, Gucci and Dolce & Gabbana.
Polo Limited is the main money maker inside the Polo Luxury entity, specializing in luxury watches, writing instruments and leather goods to a predominantly male audience. In 2014, Polo Avenue was launched, which offers luxury handbags, shoes and luggage by such brands as Versace, Salvatore Ferragamo, Balenciaga, Les Petits Joueurs and Giannico.
In addition to its retail stores in Lagos, the Polo Avenue brand is set to enter into the world of eCommerce with ThePoloAvenue.com. The online shopping platform — the first of its kind in Africa — will launch in March, shipping orders throughout Africa.
“The eCommerce sector is rapidly gaining acceptance as a retail channel for luxury goods in emerging countries — especially Nigeria,” said Jennifer Obayuwana, founder of The Polo Avenue. “Despite the infrastructural limitations, we decided to leverage on eCommerce to address the growing demand for luxury goods. The expectations of the typical African shopper are pretty high. From the latest and hottest luxury designers only found overseas, to our carefully packaged items, everything has been curated to give shoppers the feeling of shopping at an international high-end mall.”
The website will offer a highly editorialized shopping experience, including giving customers their own private concierge shopper who can select items based on their tastes and needs.
Besides selling international luxury brands, the website will also offer sustaining fashion made by Africans, for Africans. “We will serve as a marketplace for some exclusive brands in Nigeria,” said Obayuwana. “Over the past 10 years, African designers have made significant contributions to the global fashion industry. Through our Polo Avenue fashion series, we will offer products from an emerging generation of African designers and offer them the platform to showcase their work, grow their clientele and compete on a global scale.”