Urban Outfitters has spent over $100 million building Nuuly, a competitor to Rent the Runway that stocks more casual clothing. Four years in, the service is growing fast, and its owner says it will soon be profitable.
Zara, Uniqlo and American Eagle are among those leaning on the technology for abilities like self-checkout and better inventory tracking, while more companies join the ‘cult of RFID’ each year.
After years of trial and error, rental platforms have found new ways to improve margins and acquire customers, such as focussing on niche categories. Profitability remains elusive, however.
In a little more than one year, luxury e-commerce stocks, from Farfetch to The RealReal, have plummeted from astronomical highs to trading at significant discounts to benchmark Amazon.
The rental platform’s revenue is up from last year — with the number of active subscribers more than doubling — but figures still remain below pre-pandemic levels.