Sep 30, 2021
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Browns in Thrift+ link-up as it aims for more sustainable shopping

Sep 30, 2021

Luxury retailer Browns has a new partnership with on-demand donation service and secondhand retail platform Thrift+ as it looks to create more sustainable ways to shop in the UK.


The new service will allow customers “to easily donate unwanted clothes and accessories, giving them a new life elsewhere, all whilst making a pledge to your chosen charity and in turn earning Browns credit”.

It’s part of a whole suite of ‘conscious’ services the retailer has introduced of late, including its link-up with The Restory, as well as Made to Order and Made to Measure.

Luxury retailers and e-tailers have been pushing through more and more sustainable and ethical initiatives in recent years with Browns’ parent company Farfetch also active on this front.

Browns said it aims “to shift the luxury retail experience and are thrilled to be giving our customers a unique way to engage with fashion in a way that reduces our impact on the environment and our global community”. 

The service can be accessed via its online platform Brownsfashion.com, where customers will be able to order a bespoke Thrift+ x Browns donation bag. They then pack up their pre-owned clothing and book a free collection service. Thrift+ handles it all from there, including photographing the product and listing the sales online. One third of the sales result in a charity donation of the customer’s choice, another third going towards Thrift+ costs, and the remaining money converted to Browns credit. 

Browns buying director Ida Petersson said: “Thrift+ are making such monumental and ever-important waves in the conscious space. Not only are we now looking to give our clothes a second life, but through doing so, we’re also offering a helping hand to our communities — all through their ingenious platform. We’ve seen a shift in customers pivoting to being more environmentally conscious, in the way they shop and resell, and Thrift+ are engaging that one step further, by then helping through charitable means.” 

It’s good timing for the retailer with GlobalData projections that resale will develop 11 times faster than the broader retail clothing sector by 2025. Thrift+ itself grew eight times in 2020, “fuelled by lockdown wardrobe clearouts, a burgeoning next generation and inspired demographic and, perhaps most importantly, a rising concern for the environmental impact of fashion”.

But while consumers are clearly more focused on conscious shopping, they also like it to be made easy for them and Browns said the “seamless shopping experience makes the resale process more appealing, helping unwanted clothes live a second life and promoting our conscious message which is key to the ethos at Browns”. 

Thomas Berry, Global Director of Sustainable Business, at Farfetch added that as part of its Positively Farfetch strategy, it worked with Thrift+ to launch Farfetch Donate in the UK, back in 2019. In the first year, it saw donations grow over 600%, with nearly 60,000 items being donated in 2020, supporting over 1,000 individual charities.

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