Specialising in premium leather shoes and accessories, Italian luxury brand Salvatore Ferragamo is often imitated on the global black market with counterfeit items. In 2015 alone, over 12,400 imitation designs were confiscated, consequently costing the company in excess of £12 million.
This week, the Ferragamo team announced a new defence in the fight against fakes, outlining plans to insert inimitable microchips into their shoes and handbags. The chips are only detectable from a distance of 4cm, so there is no risk of tracking, says the fashion house.
With this strategy, the brand hopes to not only prevent the production of counterfeit items (which costs the European luxury market approximately £5bn per year), but also increase resale value. At the moment, the resale value of Salvatore Ferragamo products is about 1% – however, if a person can prove their product is genuine, this jumps to around 30-40%.
“More and more brands are realising that there is resale value to their products that’s lost on eBay,” says Greg Furman of the Luxury Market Council. In short, if consumers know they can sell items on for higher prices, they are more likely to buy more products.