Economy & Politics

Big brands don’t jump at the chance

Objects of success stories abroad, now anchored in the commercial landscape through specialized shops, the second-hand market is still slow to seduce large retailers in Luxembourg. If one party refuses to do so, another does not completely close the door.

Objects of success stories abroad, now anchored in the commercial landscape through specialized shops, the second-hand market is still slow to seduce large retailers in Luxembourg. If one party refuses to do so, another does not completely close the door.

(DH) – The consumer is no longer hiding it. He buys second hand. An act assumed, even committed, which partly reflects a desire to be part of a circular economy to fight against waste and pollution. But if giving new life to clothes, objects or furniture is the success of some stalls, the major brands of the country are slow to rush into the breach. However, some parent companies have taken the step of resolutely getting involved.

And the latest example comes to us from Metz where, since mid-September, the Cora brand has been testing the second-hand market within its walls. To do this, the department store brand has joined forces with a specialist in second-hand and refurbished products, in order to develop a new offer within its hypermarkets. “In the more or less short term”, Easy Cash corners should be deployed throughout the network, according to Valentin Klein Di Giacomo, director of partnerships at the specialist of the occasion.

Would this first convergence in the Greater Region have given any ideas on Foetz’s side? “We are still in reflection phase», Admits Emmanuel Coulon, marketing manager at Cora. “We do not yet have a concrete project even though we have started discussions on this subject.” “But, no doubt, our brand assumes its social and environmental role. By destocking of first-hand products, by short circuit supplies and by donations to food banks, ”he underlines.

In Europe, the Cora brand is not a pioneer. Others before her have cleared the ground. Leclerc or Carrefour, for example, have embarked on a second-hand market which is constantly growing, as indicated in a recent study, carried out by Gondola and Bpost in Belgium. The latter reveals that the growth of the sector in 2019 was 25 times larger than in retail. A sector severely impacted by the crisis in the Grand Duchy since in terms of annual variation, the sales volume remains down 4.2% compared to August 2019.

The second-hand market has therefore become a major challenge for mass distribution players who see it as an opportunity to integrate a booming mode of consumption. Auchan hypermarkets are also installing second-hand clothing departments in their stores. But what about Luxembourg? Mystery. The sign did not respond to our requests.

Unlike Cactus. The leading Luxembourg group does not intend to take the bandwagon. Finally, not as its competitors see it. To be part of a circular economy, Cactus firstly relies on “its after-sales service”, as Liz Nepper from the marketing department emphasizes. “On the one hand, we insist on the fact that the repairability index of the products that we put on the market is very good and on the other hand on the desire to invest ourselves more and more to help extend the life of the devices. », She assures. Thus, a team of more than 20 people remains on the war footing “to ensure maintenance and advice”.


According to Eurostat, the trade sector jumped by nearly 29% during the month of May 2020. No doubt: the gradual lifting of containment measures was marked by an increase in consumption.


Cactus is also proud of its Velo’s Occasiounsmaart. “In terms of the used bicycle market, its duration and scale show that customers appreciate it.” “This is how a large number of bikes change owners within a few days,” the marketing department still indicates, without giving any figures, as is the tradition within the group.

Ultimately, the second hand market has a bright future ahead of it. And even in Luxembourg. And it’s not the Vinted phenomenon who could contradict this assertion. The application created by a Lithuanian start-up in 2008, boosted by the health crisis, is shaking up the clothing market.

“Currently, you can buy and sell second-hand items in France, Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Spain. In the future, we will strive to grow our community even further, ”Juskas Janauskas said in 2013. Today, the company counts 30 million members for a second-hand fashion market which represented 13 billion euros only in Europe, in 2019.


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