Rent the Runway sees new program leading to a ‘closetless’ future
Rent the Runway, the subscription service that allows women to rent high-end designer fashions, is adding a new, more affordable monthly option intended to make its service accessible to the masses.
Jenn Hyman, co-founder and CEO of Rent the Runway, said the company expects to significantly build its subscriber base, currently around eight million users, with its new $89 a month “RTR Update” offer. The program allows members to rent and return four items per month.
“We think it opens up tens of millions of additional users because our original unlimited subscription is above $100 a month, which had limited us to household incomes of $100,000 a year plus,” she said on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” program. “We think this brings it down to $75,000 a year household incomes.”
The new program gives members access to a curated set of brands, including Joie, Mara Hoffman, Opening Ceremony, The Kooples, Tibi, Tory Burch, Vince and more. RTR Update focuses on everyday fashions and does not include formal dresses and gowns included in the company’s “RTR Unlimited” subscription.
Rent the Runway has raised the price of its Unlimited service to $159 a month from $139. This subscription allows members unlimited rentals with access to four items at a time from more than 500 designers throughout the month.
Ms. Hyman sees Americans turning to a “closetless” future in which consumers own fewer pieces of clothing. Data from Casandra, as reported by The Washington Post, shows that younger consumers are open to sharing clothes with others. Sixty-two percent of Millennials and 57 percent of teenagers would like brands to offer more ways to rent items.
“Social media has created an atmosphere in which, yeah, you could wear the same thing twice, but you’d rather not if you can avoid it,” said Rachel Saunders, strategy director at research firm Cassandra, told the Post. “So how do you do that without spending a fortune? It’s all contributed to this idea that it’s okay to share clothes with strangers.”
- RTR Update – Rent the Runway
- Rent the Runway expands its fashion subscription service, aiming to put your closet out of business – CNBC
- Rent the Runway wants to replace your everyday wardrobe with its $89 monthly plan – The Washington Post
DISCUSSION QUESTION: How likely is Rent the Runway to significantly increase its customer base with its new RTR Update subscription offer? Do you see a future scenario in which consumers own fewer pieces of clothing and other goods, preferring instead to use services such as Rent the Runway?