Premium loyalty programs are gaining ground in the apparel industry. Lululemon has seen growth since launching its premium subscription service, and brands like Macy’s and JC Penney have followed suit. Now, another legacy apparel retailer is joining the fold and putting its own spin on premium loyalty in the apparel space.
 
Banana Republic has announced the launch of Style Passport, an online subscription service that provides unlimited access to its women’s apparel collection. The brand will roll out the service at the end of September to customers in the United States, with the goal of adding men’s apparel at a later date.
 
A robust omni-experience is critical because today’s consumer shops in a variety of ways. Rental subscription is an innovative platform that will increase access to Banana Republic’s versatile style and help bring new customers to the brand.
 
“We’re constantly evolving with our customer, meeting her where she is shopping,” says Mark Breitbard, CEO and President of Banana Republic. “Style Passport will drive incremental revenue and help us connect with younger shoppers who appreciate great style and want an affordable, sustainable way to try new fashion. With this new service, we’ll gather valuable insights from a highly interactive customer base that can be used to design future product and experiences.”
 
Banana Republic is committed to integrating sustainability throughout the business, from using sustainable fibers to conducting environment-friendly practices. Style Passport provides an easy way for customers to own fewer items while improving their wardrobe with fashion for every occasion. The new service will allow customers to rent for one flat monthly fee, with the option to keep and purchase any favorite item. Style Passport is $85 per month for a three-garment plan that includes free priority shipping, unlimited exchanges and returns, and complimentary laundering services.
 
As part of the brand’s work to enhance the customer experience online and in stores, Banana Republic partnered with rental technology platform CaaStle to develop Style Passport and will utilize its white glove service to handle logistics while delivering a seamless experience. Banana Republic will also offer “Buy Online, Pick Up in Store” beginning in the fall of 2019.
 
This new program is an interesting on several levels. $85 per month is a steeper buy-in than those offered by competitors, but priority shipping and unlimited exchanges make the value proposition clear. In addition, this is a digital-first service, and it may help establish a digital ecosystem for the brand, as it embraces changing shopping behaviors and reaches younger consumers where they are.

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