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Tchibo Expands Clothing-Rental Program After Successful Trial

Tchibo is expanding its clothing-rental program to include more infant and children’s items after a successful year-long trial of the sharing initiative.

The first 12 months of the Tchibo Share program, the German retailer noted, has resulted in a “steady rise” in the size of shopping carts and conversion rates of online visitors. Baby garments, in particular, have proved immensely popular.

The company says it now plans to grow the range every six weeks, beginning with new categories of children’s wear launching May 21. Tchibo will also extend the breadth of women’s clothing and holiday-specific products.

“When our customers go through a rental cycle, they experience the benefits of Tchibo Share, the online clothing rental business,” Sarah Herms, a circular economy expert a Tchibo, said in a statement. “We are pleased to receive so much appreciation and customer loyalty for our offer. The more we broaden our offer, the more our clients borrow.”

Launched January 2018, Tchibo Share allows customers to select items of clothing on its website to rent for a least a month apiece. When returned, the garments are professionally cleaned before they’re made available for the next rental.

Tchibo pitched the program as a sustainability measure that also tapped into sharing economy popularized by companies like Airbnb and Uber.

“We believe that sharing and reusing resources is an important answer to the pressing issue of our time, how we as a company and society can protect the environment and leave a livable world to the next generation,” said Nanda Bergstein, director of corporate responsibility. “With Tchibo Share we try to inspire our customers to try out such an offer and ideally integrate it into their daily lives. It is important for us to be an everyday companion for families and to offer them services that are easy to implement in everyday life and protect the environment.”

Over in the United States, Rent the Runway made its own foray into the children’s market in April when it launched RTR Kids, which allows subscribers to borrow pint-size pieces from hundreds of designer brands—including Chloé, Fendi, Stella McCartney, Little Marc Jacobs, Marni and Philosophy—as an add-on to existing membership plans.