Industry / Retail

Why eBay Opened a Store in the Diamond District


The newest tenant on 47th Street is a familiar dot-com name.

EBay has opened a “luxury exchange” store in New York City’s Diamond District. The store lets shoppers appraise and possibly trade in their pre-owned luxury items.

It works like this: Shoppers who bring in a luxury item can have it appraised and assigned a value. They can use that value to shop the store’s inventory of designer watches, handbags, and jewelry.

If the shoppers find an item at the store they like, they can exchange it and walk out of the store with their new luxury item.

If there’s nothing in the store that catches their fancy, they have the option of visiting the store’s on-site photo studio and then listing the item on eBay’s online market themselves.

EBay has been increasingly targeting the luxury market, launching an “authenticity guarantee” in 2020.

While it perhaps is not the market force it once was, eBay remains a huge player in dot-com retail and a leading online seller of used luxury. In 2021, eBay sold eight fine jewelry pieces in the United States and Canada every minute, as well as eight watches in the United States every minute, the company said.

EBay’s announcement of the store quotes a Business of Fashion study that spotlights the growing idea of “luxury as currency.”

According to the study:

– Approximately 30% of U.S. luxury shoppers surveyed believe the value of luxury handbags, watches, and jewelry is less volatile than other investment assets they own.

– More than half of U.S. luxury shoppers see their luxury items as a form of currency.

– 62% of respondents report that they have sold items from their collection for more than the original purchase price.

The store opened on Nov. 16. Its opening was timed to coincide with New York City Jewelry Week.

(Photo courtesy of eBay)

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By: Rob Bates

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