Global fashion marketplace Lyst is tapping into the profitability of the resale market with a new partnership with Vestiaire Collective that’s designed to expand its brand base.
According to Sarah Tanner, public relations director at Lyst, the decision to team with the resale brand was a result of high demand for luxury brands not currently offered on the site. Inventory and distribution protocols among companies including Chanel, Hermès, Marc Jacobs, Balmain and Louis Vuitton made it impossible. Though Lyst offers 12,000 brands to consumers across the world, shoppers were irked at the inability to purchase select brands and asked for increased access.
“Lyst officially has the biggest inventory in fashion now, and we want to work with all the best retailers out there,” she said. “We’re not uploading every item from Vestiaire Collective onto Lyst, just a selection of the brands we know people are searching for.”
Growth has been pivotal for emerging resale companies like Vestiaire Collective. In 2016 alone, investors channeled more than $175 million into the luxury re-commerce market, which includes competitors like The RealReal, ThredUp, ThreadFlip, Poshmark, Tradesy, Twice and Vaunte. Meanwhile, competition continues to mount in an increasingly saturated market, as the companies vie for both funding and consumer support.
Ashley Paintsil, editorial director at FashInvest, a business platform for fashion technology, said the partnership makes sense for both companies as they attempt to widen their audience base, particularly as shoppers increasingly look online first for luxury goods.
“Since luxury brands have been very slow to adopt e-commerce models, and people are choosing to go online before they enter a brick-and-mortar location, the secondhand luxury market has proven to be a way they can still secure the luxury brands they really want online, like Chanel and Céline,” she said.
Ultimately, collaborating with Lyst may help Vestiaire Collective carve out a niche that sets it apart from its competitors. “For us, Lyst was the obvious choice for a partnership as our audiences are so well-aligned, and we love what Lyst is doing,” said Amra Sariya, manager of Vestiaire Collective’s UK market.
The demand for luxury resale has also increased, in part as a result of advancements in preventing counterfeiting and ensuring authenticity. Companies like Baghunter offer concierge services that help shoppers identify original designer bags, plus they ensure a comprehensive examination of stitching, leathering and brand stamping. To a certain degree, this has tampered bad blood between luxury brands and resale companies, the former of which was initially hesitant to have their goods offered up at lower prices.
“We want to be the place you start your fashion search. Having all the best retailers and brands in one place, including pre-owned and new luxury, makes us the ultimate fashion search engine,” Tanner said.