Apr 25, 2023
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Chinese fast-fashion giant Shein plans to boost sustainability

Apr 25, 2023

​Chinese fast-fashion retailer Shein plans to become more focused on sustainability, Executive Vice Chairman Donald Tang said on Tuesday, adding that consumers are no longer just concerned about affordability.


Shein sells $10 dresses and $5 tops and has taken market share from other affordable fashion retailers. The company produces clothing in China to sell online in the United States, Europe and Asia and has been criticised for promoting throwaway fashion.

"Consumers these days are no longer looking just at price," Tang said at the World Retail Congress in Barcelona. "In the next phase of growth we need to think everything we do with ESG in mind."

ESG, an acronym for environmental, social, and governance, is a term used to describe corporations' efforts to be more responsible.

Tang said that Shein, through its EvoluShein line, is offering customers an option to pick more sustainable materials and pay a premium for them. EvoluShein items are partly made with recycled polyester.

He also mentioned Shein Exchange, the company's platform where shoppers can resell used clothes, which launched in the U.S. in October and aims to start in other markets this year.

"These are the things we are doing but that is obviously not enough; we have to do a lot more, a lot more research," Tang said.

Shein continues to grow "very robustly", Tang said, and regularly has less than 2% of unsold inventory.

Shein does not have any permanent physical store presence but has opened pop-up stores in cities including Houston, San Diego, Antwerp, Paris, Barcelona, Birmingham, Bristol and Cardiff.

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