Kering invests in second-hand fashion platform

Global
Published:  03 March, 2021

The resale fashion platform has announced the completion of a new €178 million financing round, backed by French luxury group Kering and by US investment firm Tiger Global Management, accelerating growth in the second-hand market.

Maximilian Bittner, Vestiaire Collective’s CEO, said this investment will be “instrumental in our mission to build a more sustainable fashion industry and further grow our incredible global community”.

Kering and Tiger Global Management join existing shareholders Vestiaire Collective’s CEO, Max Bittner, Bpifrance (Large Venture), Condé Nast, the Eurazeo Group (Eurazeo Growth and Idinvest Venture) (RF.PA), certain funds managed by Fidelity International, Korelya Capital (backed by NAVER) (KRX: 035420), Luxury Tech Fund (LTF & Cuir Invest) and Vitruvian Partners, who also reinvest.

This financing round, following a strong year that saw the platform’s transaction volume grow over 100% year-on-year, grants Vestiaire Collective unciorn status and ideally positions it for its next cycle of accelerated growth.

The last three years have seen rapid growth in the pre-owned fashion sector with a further acceleration during the pandemic, predominantly driven by younger consumers' increased focus on sustainability and a growing trend for social shopping and online communities. “The resale sector as a whole is experiencing rapid growth, especially amongst Millennial and Gen Z consumers, which will come to shape the retail landscape of the future”, says Bittner.

The number of second-hand pieces in people’s closets is predicted to grow from 21% in 2021 to 27% in 2023, with the value of the second-hand sector forecasted to be worth over $60 billion by 2025.

Kering said that by investing in Vestiaire Collective (a ca. 5% stake) and by being represented at the Vestiaire Collective Board of Directors, the Group illustrates its pioneering strategy, supporting innovative business models, embracing new market trends and exploring new services to fashion and luxury customers. François-Henri Pinault, Chairman and CEO of Kering, said: “Pre-owned luxury is now a real and deeply rooted trend, especially among younger customers. Rather than ignoring it, our wish is to seize this opportunity to enhance the value we offer our customers and influence the future of our industry towards more innovative and more sustainable practices”.

This financing round will be used to scale up Vestiaire Collective’s technology and date innovation roadmap, accelerating its mission to extend the lifecycle of products in the fashion industry and drive global change through reduced environmental footprint, empowerment of fashion activism, and maintaining a B Corp certified business status.