ThredUp on Wednesday said it has confidentially submitted a draft registration statement on Form S-1 with the Securities and Exchange Commission for an initial public offering of its stock.
How many shares to be offered and at what price range have yet to be determined, according to a press release from the apparel resale site.
The IPO remains unscheduled and "is expected to commence after the SEC completes its review process, subject to market and other conditions," the company said.
Resale of apparel was on the rise before the pandemic and is retaining strength even as clothing sales have faltered. At a time when a retail bankruptcy is more likely to be in the news than a retail IPO, ThredUp's plans reflect that endurance.
The company has partnered with a slew of mainstream retailers, including Macy's, J.C. Penney, Madewell, Gap and Walmart. But ThredUp, Retail Dive's Disruptor of the Year last year, is hardly the only player in the space. The RealReal, which deals mostly in luxury and recently tied up with Gucci, went public last year. Urban Outfitters last year launched its own apparel rental company, Nuuly, and Nordstrom is piloting its own effort in New York. Rebag focuses on handbags and accessories. And there are others, in the U.S. and abroad.
ThredUp itself has been a major source of information about the market, releasing annual surveys reflecting consumers' growing attraction to secondhand clothing. While nearly 80% reported plans to decrease their apparel spending in recent months, about that many also said they have or are interested in shopping for used clothes to save money, according to ThredUp's June report. Among Gen Zers, 90% say they shop resale when they're low on cash, and, in something of a generational shift, 80% say there's nothing to be ashamed of when they do.
Analysts also see the appeal of resale. Citing the partnership between The RealReal and Gucci, as well as Levi's recent move to create a marketplace for used jeans, BMO Capital Markets analysts led by Simeon Siegel said in an Oct. 6 client note that "it is clear that a focus on improving the sustainability of fashion and the expansion of the circular economy is only growing" and they "expect ongoing growth across resale platforms."