Prada sees second-hand fashion as an opportunity and assesses partnerships

VALVIGNA, Italy: Italian fashion group Prada sees an opportunity in the booming second-hand fashion sector that it can develop both internally and through partnerships, Lorenzo Bertelli, chief executive officer, told Reuters marketing and designated heir. The market for chic second-hand bags and clothing has exploded over the past three years, driven by younger, more environmentally conscious shoppers seeking affordable high-end products. It is expected to reach 33 billion euros ($ 37.2 billion) this year after growing 65% between 2017 and 2021, according to consulting firm Bain. This compares to a 12% growth for brand new luxury goods. Some rival luxury companies are already exploring the area. Earlier this year, French conglomerate Kering took a 5% stake in Vestiaire Collective, a leading platform for second-hand clothing and handbags. Kering’s flagship brand Gucci also formed a nL2N2KZ23T partnership with US resale platform The RealReal last year. “The second hand is a strategy that we have been studying for over a year,” said Lorenzo Bertelli, the eldest son of co-CEOs Patrizio Bertrelli and Miuccia Prada and the future leader of the brand, in an interview at the Reuters conference Next aired on Wednesday.

“I can’t give too much away, but the second hand is definitely here. We will use it as an opportunity.

“It can be a partnership with an actor or it can be something more internal, or both, kind of a hybrid solution like e-commerce,” he said. The heir to the Prada empire, who told Reuters he wants to keep the independent family group nL8N2SF4OL when he takes the reins in a few years, does not seem afraid of the future challenges of the ever-changing luxury sector. For this, he thanks his experience as a rally driver.

“Rally and sport in general have taught me a lot. (It) teaches you never to give up and also a lot of humility, in the sense that you have to learn,” he said. “Sometimes sport is cruel when you want to compete.”

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(Written by Claudia Cristoferi, edited by Emelia Sithole-Matarise)

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