Another Resale Retailer Is Tapping Into the Luxury Consignment Market

Courtesy of thredUP

ThredUP wants to take The RealReal's spot as king of used designer goods.

These days, everyone's on the hunt for a bargain. Thanks to sites like The RealReal and Vestiaire Collective, the search for a gently used Gucci belt or a Louis Vuitton bag from three seasons ago is a little easier than the days of combing through piles of vintage garb.

Both resale sites have expanded rapidly in the past few years with the help of investors funneling millions in venture capital, as have off-price retailers like Nordstrom Rack and Saks Off Fifth — all of whom tout marked-down designer finds. 

Now ThredUP, a San Francisco-based resale site that is known for its selection of mid-tier brands, from J. Crew to Madewell to Free People, is getting into the luxury game by launching its own site dedicated to authenticating and reselling designer pieces. 

Beginning today, sellers can request an invite to beta mode of the brand new ThredUP Luxe platform. Once approved, sellers will receive a "Luxe Clean Out Kit," which, like the site's current clean out kit, includes bags and prepaid shipping labels that allow users to easily send their items to ThredUP's luxury assessors, who have been trained to authenticate and itemize the pieces and set a suggested price. However, unlike the regular ThredUP program, users also have the option to set their own price for their pricier goods.

Sellers receive an 80 percent commission on items that sell (though during the beta phase, which runs through Labor Day, they will receive 100 percent commission) and have the option to reclaim their item free of charge after 90 days if it doesn't sell. (That number is higher than The RealReal, which has a tiered commission rate that starts at 55 percent for goods under $1,500, and goes up to 80 percent seller commission for fine jewelry or Hermes Birkin bags.)

According to a report from ThredUP, the secondhand retail market is on track to reach $33 billion by 2021, and online resale is outpacing brick-and-mortar stores. (Though ThredUP just opened its first brick-and-mortar store in Texas in June.) With thrifty consumers willing to do a bit of digital digging for the goods they want, it comes as no surprise that sites like ThredUP continue to expand. 

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