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H&M opening Outlet Store to complement their existing circular and sustainability efforts

H&M opening Outlet Store to complement their existing circular and sustainability efforts

Sustainability Mar 30, 2022 at 6:36pm

Is it just us, or does it feel like you can’t open a retail publication this month without seeing the letters H&M gracing the news feed? All the hype piqued our interest, so we thought it appropriate to dive into their latest developments and share them with you.

The retail giant is making waves in the fashion industry with strategic moves, in what appears to be an effort in combating the pandemic aftermath. Not only are they moving to a more circular way of production but are also greatly supporting their supply chains eco footprint legacy.

H&M will be opening its first “Outlet Store” in the UK at the Affinity centre, Staffordshire this spring.

H&M says the new store is the brand's only UK store in an outlet setting, which means shoppers will be able to get their hands on clothing at marked-down prices. The move seems to follow New Look’s move into clearance last month with its first outlet store at The Boulevard in Northern Ireland. The fashion retailer will open a 7,000 sq ft store at Affinity Staffordshire, which is aimed to have a lower volume of products, that will be displayed in an inspirational way.

Centre manager Sue Sweatmore with volunteer helper Liberty Heather (Image: Stoke Sentinel)

Global Mutual secured the H&M signing at Affinity Staffordshire and head of outlets and business development Nicky Lovell said the letting was “a reflection of the appeal of our model to retailers”. Lovell added, “As the retail market continues to reposition itself post-pandemic, it is becoming clearer that the outlet environment is increasingly sought after for both consumers and brands offering convenience, value and quality within a welcoming and accessible setting”.

The H&M outlet store will also offer the retailer’s Garment Collection and Recycling service, allowing customers to donate unwanted clothes and textiles in store in exchange for digital vouchers. H&M UK and Ireland country manager Toni Galli said: “We always strive to offer our customers a meaningful shopping experience where style, creativity and culture are celebrated, and we are confident that our new Staffordshire store will offer our customers exactly this.”

Not only is H&M jumping onto the “Outlet Store” bandwagon & circular fashion model, but it’s sustainability / environmental consciousness drive goes directly to the core of Its products. Their latest kids' collection turns plastic waste into everyday fashion, and for two years in a row they have teamed up with Danone AQUA for their bottle2fashion project. The project transforms plastic bottle waste from across the islands of Indonesia into recycled polyester that is then turned into garments for the brand.

Above garment from their Bottle2fashion collection, created from recycled polyester (Image: H&M website)

In 2021, H&M’s bottle2fashion collected and recycled over 7.5 million PET bottles, more than double the amount from the previous year, showing that the retail giant is consciously transforming the retail landscape year on year.

Image from H&M Garment Collecting programme. The world’s biggest of its kind. It was rolled out globally in 2013.

Not only is H&M making headlines in the UK but has now started selling external fashion brands on its core website for the first time in Sweden and Germany. The fashion and homeware retailer started selling external brands in its home market of Sweden back in February 2022, as a first reported by fashion Network. H&M has only previously sold beauty products from external brands, so the development is rather monumental for the brand.  This latest offering sees H&M taking on fashion marketplaces like ASOS, Zalando and Amazon. If your'e interested in what they are up to, have a look at the H&M Website for some of their latest campaigns

H&M is a brand to keep an eye on, with such a progressive and dynamic business outlook, we eagerly await many more outlet shops and developments coming in future!

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