ThredUp claims the global second-hand fashion market will reach $350 billion by 2027

March 11, 2024 by
Frank Calviño

According to a report by US fashion resale platform ThredUp, the global second-hand fashion market is expected to double in size to $350 billion by 2027. In 2023, it recorded revenues of $211 billion.

The report highlights that online sales are one of the main drivers of this market, which is expected to grow by 21% on average over the next five years. Another growth factor is Generation Z, as 56% make at least one purchase a year in online second-hand shops, and 64% look first to see if a product is second-hand when buying it.

However, the study shows how the sector's growth has slowed in recent years and will continue to do so. Peak revenue in the sector was seen in 2022 when it grew by 28%. In the last year it grew by 19%, and by 2024 it is expected to grow by 17% to $240 billion. By 2027, we will see stagnation in its growth, with revenues rising by only 8%.

"We have made significant progress in stimulating circularity in fashion: resale is beginning to flourish globally, and many of the world's largest retailers are adopting more circular business models," explains James Reinhart, CEO of ThredUp. "We are still in the early days of inventing how resale can reduce the current glut in the apparel industry, and I don't see a world where we go back to the way it used to be," he added.

Reasons to choose second-hand products 

Among the main reasons why consumers choose second-hand products are the price of the items, topping the list, and quality. In third place is product selection, followed by convenience and transparency.

In addition, according to the data, 82% of retailers who have started offering resale products expect it to generate a positive ROI. Nearly two out of three retailers who offer resale say their resale investment will increase in the next two years. Even so, almost half of retailers offering resale say that resale may cannibalize new product sales in the short term, but they believe it will bring positive returns in the long term.

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