Decathlon also debuts in fashion rental.  First sports retailer

Decathlon also debuts in fashion rental. First sports retailer

The fashion rental fever also infects mass sportswear. The UK division of Decathlonwhich has just entered into an exceptional partnership with the British platform specializing in rental fashion Hirestreet. At the heart of the collaboration, which gives the French sporting goods company the primacy among its competitors, are clothing for skiing and hiking, part of Decathlon’s core business.

The selection of clothing that consumers will be able to draw from for rental includes 18 different ski and hiking jackets and pants for women, in sizes 6 to 16. Hirestreet will provide rental periods of four, ten or 30 days and will also provide coverage for accidental damage or minor signs of wear, with a starting price of 15 pounds (around 18 euros). Used clothing will be sanitized upon return by one of Hirestreet’s partners.

“Renting our textiles is a new adventure for us and we are thrilled to share it with Hirestreet,” he said Sharon Poulter, Decathlon rental manager, in a statement. “It’s another way we are making sport more accessible, through convenience, price and flexibility, all while reducing our impact on the planet.”

Regarding the product category that kicked off the project, the manager continued, “the rental of ski clothing was an obvious starting point, but we expect to expand our offer in the future to make physical activity even more more accessible and sustainable “.

Decathlon is certainly not a solitary voice, although the first to rise in sporting goods retail. The fashion rental market is experiencing an unprecedented surge, with forecasts (read on Statesman) of further and constant growth that see it reach seven billion dollars by 2025. A trend that has all the air of not being fleeting, because it is the expression of a new sensitivity and a new approach to consumption, especially typical of the younger generations.

And the advent of Covid has helped to act as a catalyst. Agree Bain & Company, according to which the pandemic crisis could effectively make clothing rental one of retail’s biggest winners in a new consumer era. A scenario in which the concern for sustainability is pushing more and more consumers to reconsider their spending models and to choose the sharing economy.

The new approach so inclined to rental lends itself particularly to the segments of fashion that churn out formal or ceremonial clothing, the price of which risks not being amortized by the occasions of use, and designer garments. Just think of the success of platforms such as Rent The Runway oh Cocoonwhich he recently invested in Dry, with a focus on luxury bags. Or again to the strategic move of some department stores, from Selfridges ad Harrods, who are venturing into luxury fashion rental supported by specialized players with the aim of making it an almost structural segment. Hirestreet herself signed a partnership with the UK retailer at the end of last year Marks & Spencer.

But also the world of sportswear could benefit by deciding, as Decathlon has guessed, to focus on technical garments that go beyond everyday use and whose price could be onerous.

However, the company’s plan does not stop there, suggesting that it wants to take a new approach tout court to low-budget sports purchases.

For his part, Hirestreet also says he is enthusiastic about the agreement with Decathlon, explaining how by now fashion rental is destined to cross the boundaries of formal clothing to move towards new segments. “Decathlon – commented the founder and CEO Isabella West – has been a market leader in sportswear for decades and we share similar values ​​to make sustainable clothing, whether it be sports or fashion, accessible to all and with the preservation of the planet as a priority ”.

In the meantime, it’s time for the Decathlon home laps. The company has just named Barbara Martin Coppola new general manager, who will succeed to Michel Aballeaat the helm since 2015. The manager, formerly responsible for digital transformation for Ikeawill be the first woman to fill this role within the chain, present in 70 countries.

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