Ok Guys, quick high-level overview, Rent the Runway is a subscription fashion service. It lets girls rent clothing that they otherwise wouldn’t buy/be able to afford. Today they announced an expansion of their subscription services to include more clothing options and encourage users to think of them as more every day vs special occasion. They are calling it the “closet in the cloud”. Clever.
I know you’re thinking “Why should I care about this?” and “Dam, he has some serious range, effortlessly covering topics from Pizza Hut to high fashion”, but here’s why…. Closet Space. If you live with a girl you know the “space” part of that phrase is really just an abstract concept which Agent Smith sums up in this direct quote from The Matrix:
Agent Smith: I’d like to share a revelation that I’ve had during my time here. It came to me when I tried to classify females and I realized that you’re not actually good roommates. Every good roommate on this planet instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with the surrounding environment, but you females do not. You move into an apartment and your clothes multiply and multiply until every inch of closet space is consumed and the only way you can keep buying clothes is to spread to another area. There is another organism in this apartment that follows the same pattern. Do you know what it is? A virus.
The real kicker is that half these clothes get worn once or not at all and then collect dust, in your closet until the end of time*. But now with the “closet in the cloud” it’s someone else’s problem. The clothes come, your girlfriend wears them, and then they go.
- The Pros
- Less money spent on clothes that will never be worn
- Bigger wardrobe for her
- More closet space for him
- The Cons
- With new clothes every week, there will likely see an increase in “how does this look” conversations
From a business stand point this is a no-brainer. We are in a renting / on demand world. Rent your transportation with Uber, rent your living quarters with airbnb, why not rent your wardrobe with Rent the Runway? On top of their “on demand” capabilities RtR also has the benefit of being a subscription model with a strong reoccurring revenue stream which I love.
You heard it here first, within the next year you’ll see Rent the Runway wind up either in an IPO or as an acquisition target.
*Try telling a girl that she should toss an item of clothing because she “never wears it” and you’ll get every excuse in the book as to why they can’t. “I might need it some day” , “That color is going to be in this year”, “I only have that shirt in 3 other colors”. Meanwhile, if I don’t wear a shirt for a week, it’s on the fast track to Goodwill.