TikTok’s social commerce arm TikTok Shop has partnered with Real Authentication, a leading US-based luxury goods authentication firm, to provide authentication and evaluation of used luxury handbags on the platform in America.
Just last month, TikTok Shop also entered into a partnership with Entrupy, an AI-powered authenticator, to provide a similar service, or self-service, in the country. Sellers on TikTok Shop will receive a handheld microscope that connects to their smartphones to take pictures of their goods. Afterwards, they upload the pictures to Entrupy. The AI model will then authenticate and provide a certificate to items that pass the examination. All second-hand luxury items listed on TikTok need certificates from third parties such as Entrupy or Real Authentication.
TikTok Shop has made several moves to build its capability in the pre-owned luxury market. Back in August, Business Insider reported that TikTok was building a dedicated team for the used luxury market in North America by hiring a Head of Pre-Owned Luxury and seller managers. It also appeared to be trying to include influencers in the sales category for “content- and creator-commerce”. By boosting its luxury resale capabilities, TikTok is set to go head-to-head with established competitors such as The RealReal and Poshmark, or Vestiaire Collective in Europe.
Globally, the pre-owned luxury market grew to 31.1 billion USD in 2022. With an estimated compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.1% between 2023 and 2028, the market is projected to reach 51 billion USD by 2028. As TikTok grows its e-commerce division, established platforms are also eyeing the used luxury sector. eBay has already been working with authenticators and other third parties to deal with the counterfeit problem in the resale market. Amazon partnered with vintage luxury retailer WGACA last October for supply, warehousing, shipping and authentication. TikTok will likely face stiff competition as it expands in the market.
Weighing only 5% of all luxury consumption in the country, the luxury resale market is small but quickly growing in China. Domestic second-hand e-commerce platforms include Secoo, Plum and Poizon (Dewu). However, offline shops are preferred by some, due to the same authenticity issue. Like TikTok in the US, platforms back home are also striving to improve their authentication processes.