Gucci, Prada At Goodwill? New Resale Site Will Feature Luxury Brands

Thrifting giant takes on secondhand marketplaces Poshmark and The RealReal with proceeds funding Goodwill’s charitable work.

<div class="paragraphs"><p>(Source: <a href=";utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_content=creditCopyText">James Ree</a> on <a href=";utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_content=creditCopyText">Unsplash</a>)</p></div>
(Source: James Ree on Unsplash)

Goodwill is making its first big push online with GoodwillFinds, a curated marketplace of donated goods that seeks to compete with Poshmark Inc. and RealReal Inc., secondhand sites where resale has become sport to shoppers hunting luxury brands to flip for profit.

Launching with more than 100,000 items that typically fill the racks and shelves of brick-and-mortar Goodwill stores including clothes, toys and housewares, the site is also chock full of unique high-end finds like a retro red patent leather Gucci bag selling for $499.99, black suede Prada shoes priced at $220.00 and a Burberry sapphire crystal Swiss watch up for grabs at $230.85. 

The charity, founded over a century ago, made more than $5.4 billion in donated goods retail revenue across the US and Canada last year. It uses the net proceeds to help over 100,000 people get trained and placed in full-time jobs each year, GoodwillFinds Chief Executive Officer Matthew Kaness said in an interview.

There’s an added benefit to the planet as well.

“Goodwill is not just the OG of thrifting, it’s also one of the pioneers of the circular economy,” he said. (“OG” is a term that signifies a person or group is a well-respected originator in a category or industry.) “Last year, 3 billion pounds of items were diverted from landfills with the resale of donations made at Goodwill’s 3,300 stores across US and Canada.”

Although the amount of merchandise from big luxury labels has yet to be determined, the site is expected to have over a quarter million items by the beginning of next year, Kaness said, and a loyalty membership program catering to collectors seeking early access to the newest releases is in the works. On the marketing front, they are also planning to collaborate with social media influencers to promote their favorite finds to fans.

“To date, 90% of sales have been through non-digital selling channels, primarily by third-party marketplaces like Amazon and eBay that individual local Goodwills have spun up over the years, but this is the first modern marketplace with national scale and reach,” Kaness said. The vision for it came from a consortium of Goodwill members from across the country, including six who sit on the board and are piloting the e-commerce platform. Kaness, who is a retail veteran from Walmart Inc., Urban Outfitters Inc. and Modcloth, has as his goal to get all of the Goodwill stores across US and Canada online with the platform.

Growth in the resale market, which has outpaced traditional retail apparel and personal luxury nearly three-fold since 2012, is expected to outpace retail by three times through 2031, according to Morningstar. ThredUp’s 2022 Resale Report says the secondhand market should double by 2026, reaching $82 billion.

Deal activity has since picked up in the category with the $1.2 billion acquisition of Poshmark by South Korean internet giant Naver Corp. on Monday. 

“Watching the rise of these secondhand marketplaces and the success they’ve been having with customers moving online has served as a major impetus,” Kaness said. “I feel this is a revolution that’s happening in retail right now where secondhand has finally crossed over and is seen as a force for good and not just a good deal — and we’re the sleeping giant that has woken up and is taking our rightful place.”

(Updates with Poshmark acquisition in ninth paragraph.)

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