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Balmain opens its 'Balmain universe' to the world with new app

Balmain opens its 'Balmain universe' to the world with new app
Balmain creative director Olivier Rousteing. (WWD)

Balmain is continuing to ramp up its digital credentials with the launch of an app that will allow consumers access to insider content from the house. The app, available on iTunes from today, is part of creative director Olivier Rousteing’s drive to democratize access to high fashion and make it more inclusive.

“For too many years, the legendary ateliers, boutiques and runways of Paris have only been open to a very lucky select few,” stated Rousteing. “We’d like to try to begin to change that, by inviting as many members of our Balmain Army as possible into our Balmain universe.”

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The app features augmented reality content that can be accessed, for example, by scanning posters that have been fly-posted around Paris since last night. The label’s couture show on Jan. 23 — its first in 16 years — will be live-streamed through the app. A further option will offer an immersive tour of Balmain’s Saint Honoré flagship, due to open mid-February, and new content will be added regularly.

Balmain posters were put up around Paris yesterday evening.
Balmain posters were put up around Paris yesterday evening. (WWD)

“We always said that Balmain will define a new communication strategy based on entertainment, based on inclusivity, based on authenticity, but also supported by a strong technological element,” Balmain chief executive officer Massimo Piombini told WWD.

“The app is the final element of the strategy we are rolling out to launch the new monogram, the new logo, and to support overall the new communication strategy of Balmain,” he continued. “This is a way to connect with the next generation, with new customers, with a segment of customers that are close to the brand that are expecting from us these kinds of new features.”

While the first stage of the campaign will be centered on Paris, similar initiatives are planned for other key cities later in the year.

Last year, Balmain opened a digital flagship in partnership with Yoox Net-a-porter Group, as reported. In September, it experimented with virtual reality by sending key influencers around the world virtual reality headsets through which they could view the house’s fashion show live, while it also implemented VR elements in its new Milan flagship last April.

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