Kering takes stake in London bag rental business Cocoon
Kering has stepped into the rental market via an investment in London-based handbag rental specialist Cocoon.
Cocoon operates a membership model and offers bags from 35 luxe brands, including Kering’s own top labels, as well as other big designer names such as Louis Vuitton, Dior, Fendi, Chanel, Chloé and Prada.
A starter monthly membership is £49, rising to £79 or £99 monthly, the latter offering access to limited editions and the most desirable vintage bags. It also has a Sell Your Bag option, although the bulk of the products it offers are new.
The company has new funding bringing the total raised to more than £2.5 million. Kering’s participation in this latest round came alongside earlier backers such as Depop founder Simon Beckermanentrepreneur Lilly Wollman.
The money will be used to increase its bag stocks, to add new staff and generally expand its operations in order to build on its position within the rental segment, according to CEO and co-founder Ceanne Fernandes-Wong.
The founder, whose CV includes being marketing chief at Richemont’s The Outnet and at resale leader Vestiaire Collective, said the almost-two-year old loss-making company has seen triple-digit growth since April last year. That pace is now expected to speed up.
Cocoon said: "This investment marks a step forward in [our] ambitions to be the first-choice circular solution for bag lovers. As a leader in the UK’s exciting new circular fashion market, the decision was made to focus on a product category that could reach the widest audience. Luxury handbags, universal in their appeal, have the ability to transform and uplift, and allow Cocoon to avoid operational challenges associated with other fashion products."
Grégory Boutté, Kering’s chief client and digital officer, said the investment in part of a wider strategy to identify disruptor businesses and help shape luxury’s future. As part of this strategy, Kering takes minority stakes in next-gen businesses through its ventures arm. Kering also has a 5% stake in Vestiaire Collective.
The Cocoon link will allow the luxury giant to monitor new consumption habits and digital practices. It also sees subscription rental as fitting in well with its move to greater circularity.
Rental has been growing in importance in recent years and luxury handbag rental is one of its key areas with a number of brands also entering the market on an individual basis.
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