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Country Road moves into fashion rental

Country Road has made dozens of its current season styles available for rent through a new partnership with fashion rental site GlamCorner, as it looks to reach new customers in the burgeoning rental market.

The partnership marks a significant step for the iconic Australian fashion brand, which does not typically wholesale its products to other retailers. But changing consumer behaviour made this an “obvious step” for the brand, according to Elle Roseby, Country Road’s managing director.

“Our customer is changing how they engage with fashion,” Roseby said in a statement about the partnership.

“GlamCorner’s subscription model creates an opportunity to experiment with different styles and looks in a really easy way. It’s very important that we give customers the opportunity to access our brand on their terms and that’s why this partnership with GlamCorner is so significant,” she said.

The partnership allows consumers who subscribe to GC Premium, the rental company’s subscription service targeted at working women, to add Country Road items to their monthly box of clothes for rent.

Subscribers can pay either $99 per month for one box of three designer items, or $149 per month for unlimited boxes. Other brands available for rent through GC Premium include Ginger & Smart and Trelise Cooper.

The subscription service is a new offering from GlamCorner, which launched in Australia in 2011 targeting one-off event rentals for weddings and other special occasions.

Over the past eight years, the online clothing rental market has grown rapidly, driven by the rising awareness of the environmental impact of fast fashion, as well as the opportunity to access designer brands at a fraction of the price.

Allied Market Research estimates the market is growing at a rate of 10. per cent CAGR and will reach $1.9 billion by 2023.

Recently, major retailers in the US, such as Bloomingdales, Banana Republic and Urban Outfitters, have launched their own rental services.

Country Road said it will continue to make more styles available through GlamCorner later this year, and is not concerned that rentals will cannibalise its own sales.

“There will always be a customer who wants to own fashion pieces, but as people start to mix rental and ownership, this partnership ensures Country Road is available for both,” Roseby said.

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