Indianapolis-based Simon Property Group Inc. (NYSE: SPG) has announced plans for a new, multi-platform digital value shopping venture. The company says it is partnering with Boston-based Rue Gilt Groupe (RGG) and will invest $280 million in the effort.
RGG is an e-commerce portfolio company backed by entrepreneur Michael Rubin. Simon says the new venture will combine its in-store retail expertise with RGG’s Rue La La and Gilt platforms, in addition to Simon’s online outlet marketplace, Shop Premium Outlets (SPO).
Simon says SPO has been successfully beta tested since March and is officially debuting today. The marketplace is designed to help drive additional online sales and support inventory optimization and customer acquisition, according to the company.
David Simon, president and chief executive officer of Simon Property Group, says the venture presents a tremendous business opportunity for the company.
"Following our successful test of ShopPremiumOutlets.com with VIP shoppers, we’re excited to expand our omni-channel capabilities in collaboration with a leading digital entrepreneur and the RGG platform," Simon said in a news release. "Our strong capabilities in the physical outlet space, combined with RGG’s exceptional e-commerce success, will give shoppers enhanced access to the world’s best brands and the most compelling deals both online and in-store."
Simon says it will spend the next year promoting the new venture. The SPO team will transition to RGG, which will take over the day-to-day operations of SPO.
The investment remains subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals.