(Reuters) -Etsy Inc said on Wednesday it would buy Generation-Z focused fashion resale company Depop for $1.63 billion, seeking to attract younger shoppers and bolster its position in a booming market in vintage or used clothing.
After a pandemic-driven surge in sales over the last year, Etsy, among the world’s best known e-commerce platforms for handmade goods and vintage items, estimates the U.S. second-hand clothing market alone will be worth $64 billion by 2024.
Chief Executive Officer Josh Silverman said in statement he saw Depop as “the resale home for Gen-Z consumers” and believed there was significant potential to scale up its business as he seeks to offset the return of consumers to more traditional mall and high street shopping over the next year.
London-based Depop, founded in 2011, is known for its vintage and streetwear collections and has more than 26 million users from over 147 countries.
About 90% of its users are under the age of 26 and it is the 10th most visited shopping site among Gen-Z consumers in the U.S., according to the company.
Surveys show that greater awareness of the impact of the apparel industry on the environment is also driving younger audiences towards second-hand apparel, while “thrift haul” videos on YouTube and TikTok, which show cheap purchases by people, have accumulated millions of views.
The boom has prompted companies including Gap Inc, Vera Bradley and celebrities including Serena Williams to partner with other sector players Poshmark and ThredUp.
Etsy’s revenue more than doubled to $1.73 billion last year, as shopping shifted online and consumers sought handmade pandemic-related items like masks, but the company has warned that growth would slow as consumers return to malls and physical stores.
(Reporting by Nivedita Balu in Bengaluru;Editing by Vinay Dwivedi)