Need a new outfit for a party, a wedding, or an awards ceremony? Want something special to perk up a grey day? Don’t buy it – rent it. By doing so, you’ll be part of a circular economy revolution to use more and own less.
Imagine having a wardrobe full of clothes you only wear once or twice – but instead of discarding them in landfill, you just return them to the brand you got them from and rent a whole new set for the season ahead.
Imagine renting just about everything else you only use once in a while – equipment for camping, sports or home workouts, tableware for a Christmas bash, musical instruments and clothes your kids will soon abandon or outgrow anyway, medical devices, tools, luggage for your next world tour – you name it, if it’s not perishable, rent it.
A Circular Vision
That’s the vision of Lizee, a French startup providing eCommerce and logistics software as a service. They believe that the manufacturing of goods will be cut in half during the next 25 years.
“Together with our supply chain partners, we offer a turnkey solution for brands and retailers that want to quickly transition into the circular economy by renting and reselling their products,” said Tanguy Frécon, the company’s co-founder and chairman. “Brands are realizing that it makes business sense to produce fewer goods but make them more robust so they last longer. Producing for reuse derives a different type of margin. The products become the resources.”
Lizee’s offering comes just in time as retailers are facing groundbreaking regulations in France that forbid the destruction of clothing, cosmetics, electrical items, and other goods that haven’t been sold. The ban is part of a wide-ranging anti-waste law passed by the French parliament last year.
Tanguy Frécon is convinced sustainability and profitability go hand in hand. The rent and resell business model is a new channel for brands to interact with their existing customers and reach new target audiences.
“With these new circular business models brands and retailers can deliver their sustainable transformation, clear inventory without discounting, target new consumers, and boost margins,” said Frécon.
A Skyrocketing Business Model
The market is massive. Back in 2019, Tanguy was inspired by McKinsey’s State of Fashion Report which named end of ownership as one of the key consumer shifts retailers should prepare for. The report stated that “the lifespan of fashion products is being stretched as pre-owned, refurbished, repaired, and rental business models continue to evolve and consumers have demonstrated an appetite to shift away from traditional ownership to newer ways in which to access product.”