Rent The Runway Opens Massive Store In San Francisco

Rent the Runway

Rent the Runway has opened an 8,300 square-foot store in San Francisco.

The store, located in the city’s Union Square neighborhood, is the subscription retailer’s largest location so far. In addition to 3,000 pieces of merchandise, the space also boasts stylists, a coffee cart, space for evening programming and networking events, desk space for co-working, a beauty bar and around 20 dressing rooms.

“Think of it like your gym or your Starbucks; it’s part of what you do on a daily basis,” Rent the Runway Chief Operating Officer Maureen Sullivan told TechCrunch.

The new store features technology that allows customers to return rented items within seconds, as well as check out with their RTR Pass on their smartphone and pick up orders without having to wait in line. As for the co-working space, Sullivan explains that the retailer’s “subscriber is a busy working woman. Sometimes she may want to come in and work.”

Rent the Runway also has physical stores in Chicago, New York, Woodland Hills, Calif. and Washington, D.C. The company launched its first standalone location in San Francisco last year, but that space proved to be too small. And since data shows that customers would like to try on clothes before they rent, RTR plans to open additional stores and “experiment with its physical presence.”

“Data is at the heart of our company,” Sullivan said. “We aren’t a typical direct-to-consumer brand.”

In March the company  notched $125 million in a funding round that brought the firm to a $1 billion valuation. Franklin Templeton Investments and Bain Capital Ventures led the investment. Rent the Runway CEO Jennifer Hyman said in an announcement at the time, according to reports, “Shared, dynamic ownership is a movement that Rent the Runway has pioneered over the last decade, and we’re excited to continue to lead the market and innovate our subscription service.”


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