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RealReal founder: luxury resale is hear to stay

Catie Perry

The luxury reseale market is providing jobs, is environmentally friendly and has room to grow.

“Resale’s here to stay,” according to Julie Wainwright, founder and CEO of the luxury consignment company, The RealReal.

The RealReal offers authenticated second-hand high-end brand clothes and accessories – Gucci purses, Burberry coats and Louis Vuitton shoes, for example – for hundreds or thousands of dollars less than they would be in store.

Wainwright joined FOX Business’ Liz Claman for an exclusive interview about the growing business.

“I really started it because I saw all of this product sitting there with no real avenue to resell high-end goods, and I found a huge white space,” Wainwright said.

The CEO also explained how they make sure the products they are selling are the real deal.

"We have gemologists, horologists (watch experts), brand authenticators, and they train and examine products all day long," Wainwright said. "We stand by the process. It's a multi-point authentication process."

Is the resale world existing peacefully with high fashion brands? For the most part, Wainwright said.

The RealReal has deals and partnerships with companies, such as Burberry and Stella McCartney, which “understand our business as part of the lifecycle of luxury,” Wainwright said.

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“Chanel actually, sadly, is the outlier,” she added. “They're the ones trying to fight resale in the whole business.”

Wainwright said The RealReal is environmentally-conscious, in addition to being value-conscious, which she says is important to younger buyers. As the business has evolved, Wainwright said consumers are realizing the sustainable impact of resale.

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“About one truckload a second of garments go into landfill,” Wainwright told Claman. “Recirculating goods just makes sense.”

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