The National Retail Federation (NRF) today said it has acquired the Reverse Logistics Association (RLA), a global trade association for the returns and reverse industry, saying the move supports sustainable practices throughout the retail sector.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
According to NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay, buying RLA will help accelerate the emergence of the circular economy, which he defined as an economy-wide effort to ensure that useful products, materials, and resources are reused or recycled.
While hundreds of retail brands already offer “gently used” or “pre-loved” products to their customers, many others sell excess inventory at a discount. The reverse logistics industry manages the collecting, sorting, repairing, and refurbishing of products for resale or recycling.
Toward that end, the acquisition will ensure that NRF’s members and the industry will continue to receive the most forward thinking, real world, and actionable innovations, research, and information to drive the evolution of the world’s supply chain, NRF said.
“Joining NRF is an exciting opportunity for RLA and our members,” RLA Executive Director Tony Sciarrotta said in a release. “NRF recognizes reverse logistics as the backbone of the circular economy and understands how it plays a vital role in broader sustainability initiatives for the retail industry. Through this partnership, RLA will continue to reach industries investing in the circular economy and enhance NRF’s long-term commitment to retail’s supply chain and sustainability efforts.”