Abercrombie & Fitch resale value

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by stevejobs, Dec 8, 2008.

  1. stevejobs

    stevejobs Senior member

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    I know many of you frequent the Buy and Sell forum hoping to score outrageous discounts on designer fashions. Prices there are marked down upwards of 70-80% off of list, so consumers are getting a steal.

    But for sellers, it's hard times. One recent seller tried to sell a new Zegna cashmere sport coat that retails for $2000, but couldn't get a sniff even though he dropped the price to as low as $250 or an 87.5% discount. For those who have overstuffed closets and need to raise cash, you'll find similar tales of woe.

    However, I was browsing ebay and came across some Abercrombie & Fitch listings. What amazed me is how many bids they got (most 5+ and some 25+) for what is consider decent, but not anywhere near luxury clothing. Moreover, looking at some of the successful auctions, most of the winning bids bought the A&F merchandise from anywhere from half to a third off retail, which is respectable, but not insane bargains like the one I mentioned above.

    Furthermore, in comparison, Ralph Lauren auctions frequently had few bidders per item and to get any traction even for the luxury Black and Purple Labels, sellers had markdowns that were almost always greater than 60% to start. It was not unusual for a new Ralph Lauren jacket that retailed for $1500 to get winning bids that topped out at $200-300 if it sold at all. This was also true in percentage terms with comparable luxury brands like Armani and Zegna.

    So, it seems that there is a disconnect. Even though it produces an inferior product compared with the luxury brands, A&F retains a higher resale value if you are selling its apparel to others even in these economically challenging times, while higher end fashion goes wanting.
     


  2. warmpi

    warmpi Senior member

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    You would probably get more thread traffic if you avoid titling your threads with "Abercrombie & Fitch".

    And I'm probably pulling at straws here but..

    Most people that wear Zegna, et al, can afford to buy it new. Most people that wear these high end luxury brands are pretty affluent to begin with. Most.

    Most people that wear A&F are college students, or teens that want to look older. Most will ebay. So we'll see lots of young people ebaying these "hot" clothes, especially given their cash strapped status.

    Rich people don't ebay.
     


  3. FidelCashflow

    FidelCashflow Senior member

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    steve, for the longest time I've been wondering this.... how comes all your posts are about the business of the clothing industry and not about clothes themselves. What's up with that?
     


  4. PolePosition

    PolePosition Senior member

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    Irregardless of economy, when it comes to the secondary market you have to look at demand. For us, we are people who are looking for deals on luxury items. We are in the minority. I know alot of people personally who only wear A&F/Hollister and are frequent shoppers of those brands in the secondary market. They don't know anything else. "omg I got this A&F shirt for so cheap". People like that are the reason why eBay sellers of A&F get so many bids. Even places like Plato's Closet and other stores that buy/sell used clothing get so much traffic from people looking for used mall brands like that.

    They just arent smart and people arent getting the word out that luxury items are going for the low low and marketing to these people who think A&F is expensive and anything else that retails for more than that, unattainable.

    In other words. Mall-brand consumers looking for deals only know to look at mall-brands (maybe this is the wrong term but in the context of this thread I'm referring to Abercrombie, Hollister, American Eagle, etc). They don't think to look for deals on actual nice clothing that can be had for the low-low.
     


  5. nerdykarim

    nerdykarim Senior member

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    af rarely goes on sale but there are prl outlets outside of every city.
     


  6. slycedbred

    slycedbred Senior member

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    af rarely goes on sale

    false
     


  7. nerdykarim

    nerdykarim Senior member

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    false
    really? i guess that's just the impression that i get (not having ever shopped for abercrombie, so i'm not an expert) i heard they didn't even do anything for black friday. edit: do you really think the answer to this question lies in the demographics of ebay bidders? that can't be it. edit2: i need to go to sleep.
     


  8. JoeWoah

    JoeWoah Senior member

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    af rarely goes on sale but there are prl outlets outside of every city.

    There is an A&F outlet outside of DC.
     


  9. oneeightyseven

    oneeightyseven Almost Special

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    A lot of it has to do with counterfeit goods. People who create counterfeits aren't going to counterfeit lower end clothing, i.e A&F. However, they will target the luxury market and aim to imitate the more expensive goods. This is why we see so many gucci, versace and armani fakes. No one fakes A&F because they're already cheap enough.

    To answer your question, it somewhat is related to the demographics of the buyers. The majority of buyers on ebay are people who cannot spend vast amounts of money on clothing, hence the fact that they are on ebay to begin with. There are also much more people who purchase A&F than people who appreciate luxury clothing, which will increase the activity of that ebay auction.
     


  10. DocHolliday

    DocHolliday Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    For many people, the thought of buying $1,000 shoes goes out the window when the guy in the next office just got sacked. But Junior still needs a gift this Christmas.

    Really, I don't think you can compare these resale values in terms of percentage discount. People are much more likely to drop $30 on an item these days than $300, even if the $300 is a tenth of retail and the $30 item is discounted only by a third. High-end clothing purchases are pretty much the definition of discretionary spending. You might say the same is true for pricey mall brands, but there's a much, much wider market for those than, say, Black Label, and the investment required is much smaller.

    Even in the best of times, closing prices of high-end items often depended on two or three bidders. And that's still the case -- a pair of suede EGs I was watching just ended at $721. That's more than I'd have expected them to command six months ago.
     


  11. Opermann

    Opermann Senior member

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    I used to sell a little A&F. In fact, I had some A&F jeans back in the day that I wore the hell out of, then sold for a profit!! Abercrombie & Hollister is all about the image and lifestyle, and their marketing is geared toward that. Just walk into any mall and you can usually smell your way to the nearest A&F. College and high schoolers who want to impress their friends and girlfriends don't care about high-end suits and other sartorial concerns we address here. When I was 17 I didn't even know what RLPL or Zegna was.

    When I wore it the quality was better than Gap, A&E and other mall brands, so it was seen as "high-end" in the eyes of teenagers.
     


  12. TheDroog

    TheDroog Senior member

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    Whenever I go to used clothing shops in the area to sell my old stuff, the clerks always buy my old Abercrombie items. ALWAYS. At the same time they'll toss aside nice pieces from Brooks Brothers and Ralph Lauren. Go figure. My guess is there is much higher demand for A&F among thrifters, and hence it's a smarter business decision to stock it.
     


  13. whiteslashasian

    whiteslashasian Senior member

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    I used to sell a little A&F. In fact, I had some A&F jeans back in the day that I wore the hell out of, then sold for a profit!! Abercrombie & Hollister is all about the image and lifestyle, and their marketing is geared toward that. Just walk into any mall and you can usually smell your way to the nearest A&F. College and high schoolers who want to impress their friends and girlfriends don't care about high-end suits and other sartorial concerns we address here. When I was 17 I didn't even know what RLPL or Zegna was.

    When I wore it the quality was better than Gap, A&E and other mall brands, so it was seen as "high-end" in the eyes of teenagers.


    +1

    Having recently graduated from college and many of my friends still currently shop at these "mall-brands" it makes sense to me that the secondary market for these brands is so strong. I grew up in this "internet" generation where things like ebay, facebook, and google are highly integrated into every day life. This younger generation grew up hanging out in the malls and shops which these brands have thrived in and since the $100 A&F jeans with the distressing and antique wash is so cool but "expensive" (at least for high school and college budgets) it becomes a status symbol that the youngsters strive for.

    Put the two together and you have a generation yearning for A&F and being closer to realizing their wants through the lower prices on eBay.
     


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