Etsy buys second-hand clothing app Depop to tap into gen Z | Fashion industry

Etsy is buying Depop, the British second-hand fashion resale app, for $1.6bn (£1.1bn) to tap into the fast-growing trend of generation Z young people reselling clothes online.

Josh Silverman, the chief executive of Brooklyn-based Etsy, said: “We are simply thrilled to be adding Depop – what we believe to be the resale home for gen Z consumers – to the Etsy family.”

Announcing the deal on Wednesday, Silverman said he expected the resale craze would continue long after the recovery from the pandemic, and he thought it would be led by Depop’s “passionate community” of fashion-conscious young people.

More than 90% of Depop’s 30 million users are under the age of 26, putting them in the highly sought-after smartphone addicted generation Z – the age bracket below millennials. Etsy said Depop was the 10th most visited shopping site among gen Z consumers in the US.

The company, which was founded by the English-Italian entrepreneur Simon Beckerman in Milan in 2011, now has registered users in more than 150 countries. It’s 2 million active sellers sold $650m worth of second clothes and other fashion items last year, with Depop taking a $70m cut.

Etsy, which was founded in 2005 and floated in 2015, has been seeking to expand its influence among a younger generation as its users are typically older: its sellers’ average age is 39.

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“Depop is a vibrant, two-sided marketplace with a passionate community, a highly differentiated offering of unique items and, we believe, significant potential to further scale,” Silverman said. “Depop’s world-class management team and employees have done a fantastic job nurturing this community and driving organic, authentic growth in a way that aligns well with Etsy’s DNA and mission of ‘keeping commerce human’.”

Etsy committed to allowing Depop to continue to operate as a standalone business run by the existing leadership team from its London headquarters.

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