August 5 2019 @ 14:20 by Richard Dawson
Online fashion rental service, Hirestreet, has acquired one of its competitors, Hire That Look, in a move that sees the two brands consolidated into one operation.
Hirestreet was founded by Newcastle-based entrepreneur Isabella West just over a year ago. It is hoped that this first acquisition will enable the business to strengthen its online technical capabilities.
Commenting on the acquisition, Isabella said: “I’ve long admired the way Hire That Look operated, so this is a tactical play to improve Hirestreet’s digital offering.
“We’re rapidly expanding, and we see the acquisition of Hire That Look as a positive step in achieving our ambitions of being the UK’s number one high street rental service.
“As more and more new players try to enter the market, our aim is to scale quickly, so consolidating the very best of Hirestreet and Hire That Look made perfect business sense.”
It is believed that something in the region of £3 billion is spent on summer wardrobes in the UK each year, with an estimated 50 million summer outfits being worn just once before being discarded.
Hirestreet and other online rental service retailers are targeting consumers who are looking for the one-off summer outfit for a party, wedding or holiday at a much more affordable price.
The rental option is also a more sustainable alternative to the ‘fast fashion’ culture, which has emerged in recent years, where mass-market retailers produce inexpensive clothing in the knowledge that it will be worn less than a handful of times and then discarded.
Hirestreet CEO, Isabella West, has grown her business into one of the largest high street rental operations in the UK, securing around half a million pounds in funding and investment in the last 12 months.
She has also been shortlisted for two awards at the NatWest Great British Entrepreneurs of the Year awards for the North East region.
She added: “More and more people are becoming acutely aware that their own lifestyle and spending patterns can have a profound impact on sustainability and the environment.
“We firmly believe that renting in fashion will become commonplace for most in the very near future.
“I’m really excited about our growth plans and am thrilled to be able to officially announce this latest acquisition.”