FRANKFURT, Germany — German retail chain Tchibo said it was launching an online baby and children's clothing rental service to tap demand for the sharing economy model popularised by the likes of Airbnb and Uber.
Under the new service, called Tchibo Share and to be launched on Jan. 23, customers could choose items of clothing on a website to rent for at least a month each, Tchibo said in a statement late on Thursday.
When they send the clothing back, it is professionally cleaned and made available for the next rental.
Companies around the world are trying out models to share cars, homes, clothing, luxury goods and power tools, seeking to appeal to a generation of Millennials that place less emphasis on owning and more on sharing, bartering and trading.
While still small, the sharing economy is predicted to grow from about $15 billion in 2016 to $335 billion by 2025, according to a recent study by PricewaterhouseCoopers.
"The rental service saves time, money and space and provides some variety in the closet. But most of all it is sustainable because it saves resources," Tchibo said.
Tchibo, owned by the German billionaire Herz family, said charges would depend on the item of clothing. Renting a children's jacket, for instance, might cost 4 euros ($4.84) a month and a t-shirt 2 euros, it said.
By Maria Sheahan; editor: Edmund Blair.