Walmart has officially entered the reseller market, now partners with ThredUp to expand fashion offerings.
This week, Walmart launched a new platform in conjunction with ThredUp, an online thrift store where users can buy and sell famous clothes.
ThredUp, known for its excellent deals on used designer products, now allows Walmart customers to purchase designer labels at regular Walmart prices.
Walmart is also a fashion focus
Walmart has tried to enter the fashion market for many years, but with little success. Before its partnership with ThredUp, Walmart carried only a small sampling of designer lines, in addition to its in-house George brand, which offers simple, affordable staples.
But Walmart has recognized that offering a wide variety of brand names will be key to boosting its apparel segment, particularly among young consumers looking for designer labels.
Furthermore, recent trends demonstrate that shoppers are less disgusted with buying secondhand clothing, which is thought to be less harmful to the environment than mass-produced clothing.
Now, Walmart’s partnership with ThredUp gives customers access to hundreds of brands such as Coach, Armani and Nike, while leaning on the general acceptance of lightly used clothing.
Impact of contract
“This partnership is our latest step towards establishing Walmart.com as the venue for fashion,” boasted Denise Incandela, fashion head of Walmart e-commerce. But how exactly does it affect Walmart’s bottom line?
It is not clear how the profit margin of second-hand clothing will stack up against the profitability of new, Walmart-made clothing.
Making cheap George-brand clothing costs less than buying second-hand designer clothes for Walmart, but the company is betting that the designer can use it to mark-up and maintain margins.
A generic article of George-brand clothing costs $20 to $40, and a good condition designer item may sell for $100, but it is still considered a theft.
Walmart is not the only retailer that tests on ThredUp’s services. Fellow bricks and mortar chain Macy’s has partnered with ThredUp in the past, opening small, in-store thrift stores in select locations.
While Macy acknowledges that resale has never proved to be a cash cow, thrift store pop-ups have successfully attracted younger shoppers.
But the real winner in this deal is ThredUp, a relatively low-profile company that will gain great visibility from its partner with Walmart.
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