Clothing does not always have to be new, and “fast fashion” is not necessarily the only choice. The fact that the market for second-hand clothing is currently one of the fastest-growing sectors of the fashion industry is proof that things can work differently. Second-hand fashion is also one of the elements of a sustainability strategy that can be used to reduce the multiple impacts of the textiles industry on the environment and climate. It makes optimal use of resources and keeps clothing items in circulation for longer. Swedish textiles group Hennes & Mauritz (H&M) has also recognised this, especially as new corporate models in leasing, repairs and resale are increasingly playing a role in the industry that is just as important as research and development investment for new recycling technologies and reusable materials. The company is now expanding its presence in second-hand fashion retail. Its latest investments mean that the H&M Group holds a share of roughly 70% in Sellpy, Sweden’s largest online second-hand shop and resale service, following its acquisition of a stake in 2015 through its investment subsidiary, CO:LAB. The group aims to foster further growth for Sellpy and advance the second-hand platform’s international expansion. It is a remarkably straightforward affair for customers: all they need to do is pack up their excess clothes and they can send them in free of charge. Sellpy takes care of all other steps, right up to the final sale. The company also performs quality assurance and recycles items that cannot be sold.
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