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Zara enters resale market with Pre-owned service

Zara is to help its UK shoppers resell, repair or donate clothing bought from the Spanish fashion chain in an effort to reduce its environmental impact.

The Pre-owned service, which launches on 3 November and will be Zara’s first step into resale or repair, will enable shoppers to book repairs and donate unwanted items online or via a store, and post now-unwanted Zara purchases online for sale.

Sellers will take pictures of goods with detailed product information provided by Zara. The company will run the sales platform via its website and app, with payment handled by the Stripe system. Buyers’ details will be passed on when a sale has been agreed so the goods can be sent by the seller.

Zara started installing clothing donation bins in Europe in 2016. Under a new partnership with the Red Cross, shoppers can request collection from their home.

It is understood that the Pre-owned service is not expected to be profitable initially. Paula Ampuero, the head of sustainability at Zara, said: “At this stage, this platform is exclusively conceived as a tool to help customers extend the lifetime of their clothing and take a more circular approach.”

Zara joins a number of retailers dabbling with rental, resale and repair as the industry faces criticism over its high carbon footprint and shoppers demand more environmentally sustainable or “circular” options that enable reuse or recycling of resources.

Marks & Spencer has teamed up with Dotte to enable resale of children’s clothing, Joules is working with Reskinned on resale, and John Lewis’s FashionCycle service offers shoppers a discount voucher in return for bringing back five items.

The resale and refurbishment market is forecast to outgrow fast fashion in the coming years, with brands from Mulberry and Harvey Nichols to Asos, Asda, Dr Martens and H&M taking part. The Selfridges department store group aims for almost half its interactions with customers to be based on resale, repair, rental or refills by 2030.

Zara said the UK had been chosen as the test market as its consumers “push us to improve and innovate”. If successful, the service is likely to be extended to other key markets.

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