Re-commerce site ThredUp, is growing from selling secondhand fashion online to opening brick and mortar stores.
The company is looking to take advantage of the boom in off priced retail stores like T.J. Maxx and Nordstrom Rack that are performing much better than traditional retailers. ThredUp will enter the market with a lead over these competitors because its prices are even lower.
According to ThredUp’s 2017 annual report, “resale disrupters” as it refers to itself are growing 4 times faster than the broader resale market because of their quality and quantity of in both items and the curation process.
Oliver Lubin founded the San Francisco-based company with James Reinhart and Chris Homer in 2009. The company was launched as a pilot for peer-to-peer online sharing of men’s shirts, but is now an online marketplace to buy and sell women’s and kids’ secondhand clothes.
Users can select clothes to sell using the company’s “Dot method” of defect free, on trend and top brands and ship them to ThredUp. Once they have evaluated the items, payment will be made upfront for items expected to sell quickly, or on consignment if they may take longer to sell. More than 1,000 are added hourly on the site according the company.
Top brands include J. Crew, DVF, Theory, Madewell and Lululemon. The site sells a variety of clothing and accessories in sizes ranging from maternity, juniors and plus.
“We have millions of units of inventory, but we’re able to create an assortment based on what’s being searched and bought online. It applies regionally, too,” Heather Craig, ThredUp’s head of retail experience, said in a Racked report. “In central Texas, for example, we’re able to see that dresses sell really well in the market, and specific types of dresses, too, so we’d just be pulling all that into the store.”
The first store recently opened in San Marcos, Texas, and the company plans to open four more locations before the end of 2017.