The Hustle

Goodwill stores are now using AI to ensure that all of its luxury items are legit

Goodwill is teaming with Entrupy’s AI-based program to guarantee the authenticity of luxury items.


January 14, 2019

As thrift-store shopping becomes increasingly trendy, Goodwill — the 117-year-old nonprofit and one-stop-shop for ugly sweater parties — has a new strategy that’s anything but secondhand.

Goodwill is teaming with Entrupy’s AI-based program to guarantee the authenticity of luxury accessories sold through its auction site and verify designer gems found deep in the depths of the circular clothes rack. 

So much more than fashion…

Founded in 1902 by the Rev. Edgar J. Helms, the Boston-born nonprofit has continued to serve over 15 countries, where the money its stores make provides job training, employment placement, and other community-based programs for those less fortunate.

In 2017, Goodwill topped $5.9B in revenue, in which it threw a whopping 89% of earnings back into its programs that helped more than 288k people land jobs and provided training and support for an additional 38.6m people.

Now, it’s moving past ugly sweaters

Entrupy’s program uses machine learning algorithms and computer-vision technology to verify items with a 99.1% accuracy rate — and, as Goodwill builds out its new, online shopping destination for trendy millennials, the automated verification approach will give its upscale some real legitimacy. 

The move is good for both parties: Verification means more patrons willing to pay higher prices for that pristine Coach handbag, which means more money into Goodwill’s donation bin.

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