Sign of the Times investment with circular economy takes off
Sign of the Times, a London based luxury resale platform has secured new investment, with off-price luxury online retailer BrandAlley making up 50% of the investment round.
The rest of the round was made up by industry leaders such as Tamara Hill-Norton, founder of Sweaty Betty and personal investment from Sarah Welsh, currently the CEO of Retail for N Brown PLC.
Sign of the Times and BrandAlley will have a strategic alliance with ongoing activities, including for Sign of the Times to provide BrandAlley with a white label ‘take back service’. This is one of several sustainable investments for BrandAlley to build on their long term vision to include sustainability and circularity within their business in a meaningful way.
The second-hand market is becoming even more of a global phenomenon; according to Thred Up’s resale report, second-hand and off price sectors are expected to take up a combined 37% of wardrobes by 2031, in comparison to 26% in 2021.
The funds will be used for marketing and strategic hires, as well as being used to acquire the assets of Cudoni, who went into administration earlier this year. The acquisition of Cudoni assets increased the Sign of the Times database by 35%.
Sign of the Times first opened in 1976 on Chelsea Green, with its original purpose rooted in reselling the designer items owned by the celebrities of the day. Now, the platform provides specialist authentication and valuation services for designer goods, focusing on delivering a luxury buying and selling experience for customers worldwide through its website. What is more, Sign of the Times has also attracted praise from the likes of Vogue, Sheerluxe, The Times, The Guardian and The Telegraph.
Antonia Johnstone, the owner and CEO of Sign of the Times commented: “At Sign of the Times we believe strongly in the circular economy and we are thrilled that BrandAlley has the confidence in our brand and the resale market to invest with us. Sign of the Times has grown by 300% in the last three years and we are looking forward to working strategically with BrandAlley in the future to achieve our ambitious growth goals.”
CEO of BrandAlley Rob Feldmann added: “At BrandAlley, we provide our customers with the very best designer brands at amazing prices. Increasingly we are using innovative new technologies and channels to maximise customer experiences whilst providing the best purchasing opportunities.
In addition to being highly savvy, deal-orientated shoppers, there’s a notable acceleration towards more considerate and sustainably-minded purchasing decisions. Our customers appreciate and recognise the growing role that pre-owned fashion plays in their wardrobes and beyond.
Our decision to invest in Sign of the Times was twofold; In addition to their brilliant track-record and highly experienced teams, they are market leaders in their circular approach. This mindset aligns with our long-term vision to grow our business in a sustainable and circular way. We look forward to working with Antonia and her highly experienced team to drive our strategic objectives going forward.”
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