In Carquefou, near Nantes, the workshop of the company It was several times is in turmoil. In this large 2,000 m² building which has housed the company for a few months, children’s clothes are taken out of the packages before being scrutinized by the employees, then photographed and stored. A huge stock of clothes, which will be put online very quickly on the second-hand e-shop Once upon a timeto be resold afterwards.
Because all these clothes for children from 0 to 16 years old will find takers very quickly. “But we are not a thrift store”, wishes to specify Aude Viaud, director of There were several times, created at the end of 2016, and which has since exploded. “At the time, there were platforms like The good corner, today there is also Vinted. But we didn’t find ourselves in these offers which were thrift stores, when we were really looking for quality. Because before being put on sale on the Internet, the clothes are all examined by one of the 36 employees of the Loire-Atlantique company. These clothes must be like new.
“We have quadrupled our turnover”
“It’s second-hand, but impeccable second-hand,” emphasizes Aude Viaud. For the buyer, it is therefore the assurance of finding quality products, which are checked one by one. Among all these products that Once upon a time recovers, 30% are not put online because their condition is considered too bad. They are then sent back to a partner association, to recycling or to the seller himself. “On average, an individual sends us around thirty pieces. It goes fast with the kids! “. The clothes are then resold between – 50 and – 80% of the new price. Three-quarters of these products are sold “in less than 10 days. »
The company Once Upon a Time is experiencing phenomenal growth. Today, the company receives nearly 2,000 articles a day! In one year, the second-hand clothing company has grown from 12 to 36 employees. In 2021, more than 250,000 items were sold through Once upon a time. “We have quadrupled our turnover between 2020 and 2021. I think there is a global ecological awareness. And then there is the Web, the stores were closed during the health crisis… People may have been a little more at home, want to sort… It had a snowball effect. There was a before and after Covid for us. We took a big step at that time, ”analyzes the Loire leader.
Goal: one million items sold
Another proof of its dynamism, the company has just completed a fundraising of four million euros. “The goal is that our logistics, which works for 2,000 products, can work for 10,000. Today, it takes three minutes between receiving the package and putting it in storage. It’s very fast but we still have to accelerate. For this, the company will multiply its production lines.
With the opening of a test store in Nantes, at Galeries Lafayette, for a few weeks, It was several times intends to show itself outside the Internet sphere. Aude Viaud is thinking of tests for the opening of shops elsewhere in France, with ephemeral stores for example. A project in the line of sight, just like that of a future application. The projects are very numerous for the Loire-Atlantique company, which is experiencing dazzling growth. Objective: one million items sold in 2023. The second hand has a future.