The partnership with ACS aims to capitalise on the increasing shift to second-hand, which is being driven by the rising cost of living and greater concern for environmental impact. It will help more brands and retailers to create and quickly scale resale offerings while giving eBay’s 20 million plus customers more selection in second-hand goods.

Advanced Clothing Solutions (ACS) cleans, sanitises and repairs second-hand items, making them resale ready, as well as arranging the logistics of item listing and delivery. The eBay platform will connect its millions of shoppers worldwide with this stock.

The first retail partner to launch on ACS’ eBay Shop is Monsoon, with other high-street names set to follow.

This collaboration follows-on from eBay’s new research, which reveals a growing ‘resale economy’ in the UK, as more cost-conscious and environmentally minded consumers choose to buy and sell second-hand over new. 

ebay uk conducted a survey of UK adults asking about their experiences and motivations of buying second-hand – 32% said to “get a better deal or to find a bargain,” while 31% agreed that both “cutting back on spending” and “rise in cost of living” had motivated them, followed by 26%, who were driven to be “more sustainable.”

Almost nine in 10 (87%) UK adults surveyed said they have bought an item second-hand in the past twelve months, while more than six in 10 (63%) say they have sold a second-hand item. So far, the e-commerce retailer said, “this trend is translating into sales, with eBay reporting one second-hand fashion sale every second so far in 2022.”

eBay remarked as the ‘resale economy’ becomes more mainstream and the scale and range of items on offer grows, consumers are increasingly likely to consider second-hand over new. One in four (25%) UK adults surveyed said that a larger range of second-hand items now being available to buy was a key reason for them making a second-hand purchase.

However, the research found barriers exist when it comes to second-hand items becoming mainstream. Concerns about hygiene (51%), safety of second-hand products (35%), quality issues (28%) and fake or inauthentic goods (27%) are the main reasons for avoiding preloved goods.

This new partnership will tackle some of these misconceptions in the second-hand market, with strict quality controls, the latest technology in sanitisation and high standards of repair helping to improve trust among shoppers and nudge more shoppers to choose preloved.

Commenting on the research, Murray Lambell, UK vice president of eBay, said: “Our economy and our environment are in need of urgent repair. If we want our businesses to be here in 20 or 100 years’ time, we need to move away from our fixation on overconsumption and instead mark ourselves on circularity. There is huge commercial value in backing the resale economy and the retailers that are first to make the change and invest, will benefit the most in the long run.”

Andrew Rough, chief executive officer at ACS Clothing added: “The surge in second-hand clothing sales is undoubtedly a reaction to the growing consumer conscience of sustainability in fashion as well as the increasing cost of living and the pressure this places on spending. eBay is famous for its vast offering of preloved clothing, and this scalable resale partnership with ACS will enable them to develop this further.

“As the biggest back-end logistics provider of resale garments in the UK, the ACS resale offering extends clothing life to minimise waste and keep current garments in circulation for longer. We take care of textile repairs, eco-friendly cleaning, quality control and more to get those preloved items back on the shelf. This partnership with eBay is not only important news for the development of circular fashion, we process over six million items at our 200,000 sq ft fashion hub each year, but it is a stepping stone for ACS as this will enable us to open our first brand-approved shop front.

“We want to redesign the future of fashion by providing a solution to the industry’s sustainability crisis. We seek to transform the fashion industry from the outdated take-make-dispose model toward a circular fashion solution that extends the life of existing textiles and diverts clothing from landfills. With eBay, we know this is possible.”

eBay said this is the latest move by the company to prevent fashion items from being sent to landfill, building on the launch of eBay’s ‘Imperfects’ Hub earlier this year – giving shoppers the opportunity to get clothes, shoes and accessories which are considered new with defects but can’t be sold at full price – and Brand Outlet, eBay’s dedicated destination to shop end of season stock at up to 70% off.

The e-commerce platform is involved in multiple projects and partnerships supporting circular economy in the apparel industry, this includes its partnership with clothing repair and resale specialist Reskinned to expand its offering and reduce fashion waste.

Moreover, in October, eBay joined forces with the British Fashion Council to launch the Circular Fashion Innovator’s Fund, offering GBP100,000 (US$113,000) in funding for small businesses specialising in circular fashion solutions.