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Camden goes online

Camden goes online

I recently attended the launch party of Camden Alternative Market – a newly established online retailer whose aim is to be a conduit for all the Camden stall holders to the online world of internet selling. Alice Flook and her partner both previously worked for Pulp so have built up a lot of contacts in the band T-shirt side of retailing and it seems that that is predominantly what they are focussing on selling on their website at the moment. Although they do say they are going to be widening their range. Alice gave up her job at All Saints to pursue this endeavour full time, while her partner still works at HMV in Angel.

The business model is quite simple: they stock trader’s wares providing the infrastructure and platform for free and then take the profit from each sale as their fee – paying the traders the cost price. It’s a nice idea and beneficial to all involved. “People come to Camden from all over the world but when they go home they have no way of buying what they may have seen. It is also a well-known shopping destination and for those that can’t travel to it, the web can bring it to you” explains Alice. With the slower winter months coming up they also feel it’ll be an added source of income for the stall holders.
They could be on to a winner here, trading on the infamy of the brand name, but need to make sure they only stock unique items and always keep pricing equivalent to those on stall. However with online, the competition is far fiercer and so time will tell if they’ll stack up for the bargain finding internet surfer.

Another well-known destination which has gone online, for those musically inclined, is Resurrection Records. A staple of the Camden visit for any discerning Alternative is now no longer and trades solely through, which up until recently ran in conjunction with their physical store. Reasons cited for the change were the commute (the owners having moved away from Camden) and simply the economics of it all. A landmark, a meeting place, a passtime to flip through CDs as the speakers inform you of new audio delights and the walls tell of gigs not to be missed. As the Dev before it, it has left a big hole in Camden.

Internet shopping: the mark of an age.