Suit and formalwear retailer Moss Bros has launched a new pay monthly subscription service for renting outfits.
Bosses hope the £65-a-month “Moss Box” service can be the new Netflix of clothing with customers able to choose two items from casual to formalwear with unlimited swaps.
Customers can select from more than 180 products including chinos, jeans, shorts, jumpers, roll-necks, waistcoats, tailoring and other wardrobe essentials from brands including French Connection, Barberis and Ted Baker.
If the customer finds what Moss Bros calls “a keeper” there is the option to buy for up to 50% off the retail price.
Moss Bros chief executive Brian Brick explained: “I had the idea about four years ago because I felt we were seeing Generation Rent – Airbnb, Zipcar, Rent The Runway.
“I felt there was a generation coming through that didn’t want to gather and collect things.
“I thought if people didn’t own their wardrobe but revolve it, would that be something they wanted?”
He added that the Covid-19 pandemic has seen a shift in trends towards sustainable fashion and a move away from the fast-fashion culture of the past, as shops were shut.
Speaking to the PA news agency, Mr Brick said: “I think the biggest change is going to be from fast fashion to slow fashion. I think this whole fast fashion is going to be beaten back by sustainability.
“When people started talking about sustainability in some cases, I think it was a little bit of marketing speak, but I think it’s real now.”
An estimated £140 million worth of clothing is disposed of by Brits every year.
According to GlobalData, the UK rental market value is expected to reach £2.3 billion by 2029.
The service is thought to be the first of its kind for men in the UK, but the boss added he would expect to see department stores such as John Lewis, Selfridges and Harrods follow suit.
He said: “I think it’s absolutely ideal for department stores to do subscriptions. I think you’d be amazed that over the next sort of 18 to 24 months, how many people will do it and it’ll catch on.”
The new service from Moss Bros will be launched in partnership with CaaStle, a leading rental technology platform in the US.
It sees the company move away from its traditional heritage of formalwear and moving into the casual market, with bosses expecting to see a new dress-down culture in offices.
Mr Brick said: “I think there will still be an element of people who go in and wear a jacket or a suit (but) I think there will be less people wearing suits for business.”