From Luckymag.com to Style.com, plenty of fashion editorial sites have experimented with e-commerce. Mostly by linking directly to online retailers that sell items hand-picked by the fashion site's editors. Last year, Instyle.com users bought $10 million worth of clothing, shoes and accessories through ShopStyle, an aggregator of products sold by online fashion boutiques. ShopStyle is owned by Sugar Inc., also home to blogs including FabSugar and PopSugar. Today, Time Inc.--publisher of InStyle--decided to say goodbye to ShopStyle and take matters into its own hands. It announced plans to purchase StyleFeeder, a similar site that currently powers the shopping tool on Elle.com, a part of Hachette Filipacchi Media US. Of course, this is a no-brainer business move for Time Inc. There's a chance for the company to gain all revenue earned by each "click through" on StyleFeeder. We wonder, though, if Time first attempted to buy ShopStyle from Sugar Inc., given the preexisting relationship. We've used ShopStyle plenty--its stores include favorites like La Garconne and even Barneys New York--but haven't spent much time on StyleFeeder's less-attractive tool. Brian Sugar, founder of Sugar Inc., tells us that while Time Inc. "has been an awesome partner," he thinks the company's acquisition of StyleFeeder was "a smart move." He declined to comment on whether or not Sugar Inc. and Time were in similar talks. We've also contacted Elle to see if the mag will continue to use StyleFeeder even though it's now owned by a major competitor. Look for an update in this space.
Time Inc. Acquires Jane Pratt Sites 'XoJane,' 'XoVain'
The sites have been up for sale since November.