Fast fashion retailer H&M launched its first branded resale platform Tuesday with ThredUp.
Now the largest retailer under ThredUp’s business-to-business-to-consumer channel, “H&M Pre-Loved” aims to offer H&M customers an easy way to access secondhand pieces for their wardrobe.
The resale goods are available to shop at Hm.thredup.com starting Tuesday with subshops for H&M concepts such as “&Denim,” “Divided” as well as ladies, kids and sport, among others. Under its “Collabs” subshop, the retailer will display its designer collaborations from years past (good for any customers who missed their first opportunity to snag Karl Lagerfeld, Isabel Marant, Kenzo or Giambattista Valli for H&M). Specific collection and item availability are subject to change.
“As we know with ThredUp, and secondhand, the assortment is changing every single day but at launch we will have 30,000 items,” said Abi Kammerzell, H&M North America’s head of sustainability, to WWD. “We are making it as easy as possible to shop for our customers.”
“What’s so great is not only our designer collaborations but also being able to shop some of our innovative pieces,” said Kammerzell. As referenced in the group’s sustainability report, this includes dabbling in next-gen materials like Mirum and AirCarbon (which were part of H&M’s “Cherish Waste” Innovation Story collection), customer clothing care guides and more. Its latest Innovation Story dropped last week, which was a ’60s-tinged collection focusing on recycled embellishments.
Kammerzell did not directly answer a question about how many clothes H&M produces annually, instead saying, “Our CEO [Helena Helmersson] set the goal for us to halve our carbon emissions while doubling our revenues. Our goal is to become fully circular.”
Previous media reports estimate H&M produces 3 billion garments a year. The retailer’s target to reduce absolute emissions 56 percent by 2030 is verified by the Science Based Targets Initiative. In 2021, H&M reduced Scopes 1 and 2 carbon dioxide emissions by 22 percent and Scope 3 by 9 percent compared with its 2019 baseline.
“We don’t want to contribute to a throwaway culture and want items to stay in use in their highest form for as long as possible,” Kammerzell continued, adding that “sustainability cannot be a luxury — it needs to be easy to access.”
This isn’t H&M’s first entry into resale. In 2019, the retailer took a majority stake in resale platform Sellpy, available in over 24 markets today.
Lately, circular fashion is experiencing the growing pains that come with reaching scale and profitability. ThredUp is among the companies that lost more than 70 percent of their value last year.
In a joint interview, James Reinhart, cofounder and chief executive officer of ThredUp, added that the partnership “demonstrates the power of ThredUp’s technology platform” that sits behind H&M’s resale experience.
On ThredUp’s website, the reseller said H&M items “go fast,” with 24 items being added a week.
To that, Reinhart said, “H&M has always been a strong selling brand on ThredUp. They have a strong sense for the consumer, and now it gives them a place to build this [circular] heritage…H&M puts pressure that every brand should have a resale strategy. What’s exciting is it really does push the industry.”
He added, “With H&M and as one of the biggest retailers, they also have some of the biggest potential. They should be applauded for their efforts.”