Kenneth Melchior

Director for Northern Europe, Zalando

German online fashion and beauty retailer Zalando is finding unique ways to eclipse competitors like Amazon.

Melchior’s partner program for the retailer was a massive success during the pandemic.

The program is a concession-based model that allows brands to sell and ship their own stock from Zalando’s platform. It meant that brands that did not have an e-commerce presence or a ton of inventory stuck in stores were able to sell their products online.

Under Melchior’s strategy, Zalando initiated immediate support for small to midsize brands that were hit hard by the COVID-19 outbreak, when stores closed and orders were cancelled.

As many retailers had to brace for volatile market events, the German company helped brands connect to its platform without any upfront expenses.

During the 2020 Easter weekend, third-party partners on the platform sold more than 1 million items through the partner program as they integrated their stock onto the site’s fashion store.

All commission fees were waived until May 31 and a weekly payout cycle was generated for brands that participated in the program.

Melchior oversees nine out of 17 countries that Zalando operates in, including the Benelux region, the Nordics, the UK, and Ireland. Between April to June, about 180 partners joined the program, making it grow 100% year on year.