CaaStle signs Moss Bros and LK Bennett to launch UK clothing rental platforms
As fashion rental services go this is claiming to be a UK first. US-based B2B rental tech platform CaaStle is expanding internationally to power subscription rental services in Britian, kicking off with menswear retailer Moss Bros from 20 April.
CaaStle will then introduce a separate unlimited rental service exclusively for womenswear retailer LK Bennett from late summer. It said further rental services in the UK market are also planned for this year.
The Moss Bros partnership will see the launch of Moss Box, a “first-of-its-kind subscription rental service for men”. It will offer customers unlimited access to rent styles from menswear brands including Moss Bros, Hugo by Hugo Boss, Barberis and Ted Baker.
For a flat monthly fee of £65, "members can create the ultimate waste-free wardrobe” selecting two styles to rent with unlimited exchanges. They also have the option to keep and purchase any items at a discount. It's perhaps no surprise that Moss Bros has signed up for this given that the company's heritage is all about suit hire for special occasions and it still operates a hire division.
The new service includes the ability to swap one or two items when ready and as many times as they want, with free unlimited shipping and returns and complimentary eco-friendly laundering services.
For its UK launch, CaaStle has partnered with sustainable garment solutions provider ACS Clothing to handle all cleaning and fulfilment operations for its international platform at ACS's state-of-the-art facility in Glasgow.
CaaStle, which powers subscription-based rental services in the US for major retailers including Vince, Rebecca Taylor, Express, Banana Republic, Destination Maternity, and Walmart's Eloquii brand, said: "In today's challenging retail landscape, subscription rental offers accretive operating income through better return on assets and a powerful new digital acquisition tool for brands that previously relied heavily on their physical stores to grow their customer base”.
CaaStle founder and CEO Christine Hunsicker added: "The pandemic has shifted shopping behaviours and accelerated the need for retailers to provide a cost-effective solution that enables customers to introduce variety in their wardrobes and to experiment with fashion from home”.
Moss Bros CEO Brian Brick added: "We launched our hire service in 1897 and we've outfitted people for the biggest moments in their lives ever since. With such a long heritage we're well-known for our formalwear, but over the last several seasons we've evolved with shifts in mindsets and shopping patterns to suit the more casual way men dress now”.
He added: “We’re excited to partner with CaaStle to offer our diversified product lineup on a new channel in the UK menswear market with Moss Box. The subscription model will drive awareness of the Moss Bros brand, engaging our current customers as well as reaching new ones by offering them to try our product before buying”.
Ahead of its association with CaaStle later this year, LK Bennett CEO Darren Top said the venture will “bring a new way of shopping to customers”.
"We believe this new rental offering will attract a new customer base to LKB, as it will satisfy those seeking a more sustainable way of shopping. We don't see this replacing core e-commerce, but rather complementing it and adding choice".
He added: “Rental will allow customers who can't afford or don't want to spend the amount required to own an LKB item to wear an LKB outfit for a special occasion. If they're already an LKB fan, this service enables them to rotate their wardrobe regularly and get fresh items for their everyday wardrobe”.
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