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You’ve probably heard of e-commerce. But what about re-commerce?
There’s a Canadian company, LXRandCo, that’s carving out a niche for itself in this category. It deals in the vintage luxury market, which is growing 14 per cent every year, according to the experts at Canaccord Genuity, a financial services company.
At first look, a $ 34,000 used handbag doesn’t sound like a deal. But upon closer inspection, the Hermès Bolide 45 Shark Palladium Hardware travel bag, shown above in perfect condition, crafted in France, is on offer for about half of what it retails for new. That’s the appeal of re-commerce.
“We have a unique business proposition in that we offer great brands such as Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Hermes, among other brands at great value,” LXRandCo CEO Fred Mannella told CBC’s On The Money in a recent interview.
Right now, they purchase most of their goods from wholesalers and auction houses in Japan but the company is looking to increase the amount of items it buys from people who come into their retail locations.
“We want to increase our gross margins by having a very interesting new category of our business which is the in-store buying program. We’re currently doing this in about 29 of our stores and we’re buying directly from the consumer in-store,” he says.
Letting people come into the stores with their high-end vintage goods and sell them for cash on the spot is meant to make the experience more fun for customers. “It allows great retail entertainment,” Mannella says.
Canaccord Genuity analyst Derek Dley writes that key people are among LXRandCo’s greatest assets. Specifically, retail icon Joe Mimran (the founder of Club Monaco and Joe Fresh), who is director and chair of the company’s international business development committee. Mimran is also a former Dragons’ Den dragon.
LXRandCo has a system for authenticating its luxury vintage offerings that, thanks to state-of-the-art technology, can verify a product’s legitimacy in about an hour.
This process is used for all its items, which range in price from a few hundred, to several thousand dollars. The average price of an item is about $ 750.
“These are the creme de la creme, these are the best products that are out there,” Manella says of his company’s wares. “We like to say we’re offering a little piece of luxury for everybody.”