Victoria Prew set up the fashion rental platform HURR to change how the fashion industry operates. Her mission was to help women easily create a sustainable wardrobe through renting, monthly refreshes or purchasing pre-owned clothing. We caught up with her to talk about her vision for the future of fashion.
Hello Victoria. Can you tell us more about you and why you set up HURR?
Victoria Prew: Although my background isn’t in fashion, I’m a millennial myself and very much embody the typical “HURR Girl”. I want access to incredible pieces of clothing, without the commitment to own them.
Before I left the corporate world, I’d watched the massive rise of the sharing economy (from Airbnb to Uber) that has impacted all areas of our day to day lives. As one of the world’s most polluting industries, I really believed fashion was the next big industry that was ripe for disruption.
So, tell us why we should rent not buy?
Victoria Prew: In the UK alone, customers spend £2.7 billion on outfits they wear just once. The industry is under pressure to do better and HURR provides all of the shortcuts to a curated, sustainable wardrobe.
We encourage our community to choose to invest in quality over quantity and purchase products that are built to last. There’s a long way to go but in a short space of time, our newly launched carbon calculator in partnership with CoGo shows we’ve helped save the equivalent in carbon of 8,000 trees being cut down – or 1.2 million miles driven in a car!
Wow – that’s impressive. How do we sign up?!
Victoria Prew: The rental process itself is incredibly straightforward. You simply choose the pieces you’d like to rent, select a delivery date and you’ll be connected to the lender via their in-platform messaging. Rentals start from as low as £16. Take some time to familiarise yourself with the HURR platform and iOS app – begin wish-listing the items you like.
With over 10,000+ listings there truly is something for everyone. I would say start with some ‘safer’ pieces that you know you’ll love or brands you’ve worn before, then you can build up to more daring rentals, pushing yourself out of your style comfort zone a bit more!
Who was part of your team at the beginning and where are they now?
Victoria Prew: At the beginning, it was just me and my co-founder Matt! Now we have a team of 20 based in central London.
What have been the main pitfalls on your road to success?
Victoria Prew: Taking too long to launch! There’s a great phrase “if you’re not embarrassed by the first version of your product, you’ve probably launched too late”. I think it’s very true, I wish I’d got going sooner!
Who is HURR aimed at? Do you have a typical customer?
Victoria Prew: Our customer base ranges from 16-75 years old! We’re building HURR as the future of fashion that’s inclusive, for everyone. Our sizes range from an XS to a 5XL.
Rather than just high-end fashion, HURR offers clothes priced at around £120 plus.
Was this what made you so successful do you think, offering mid-priced fashion as well as high-end?
Victoria Prew: I’ve always personally loved contemporary fashion brands and making sure sustainable fashion is accessible, is our number one driver at HURR. I want our customers to be renting an item, rather than buying the high-street version.
We know sustainability is at the core of what you do. Are there ways you are making HURR even more environmentally friendly?
Victoria Prew: Through our exclusive partnership with the “space-age” dry cleaning company Oxwash we believe that innovative wet cleaning processes and zero-emission logistics are a fundamental part of the differentiation of the HURR service – ensuring we can build and scale the future of fashion.
What is your current favourite sustainable fashion label and why?