Singapore Airlines offers a Perfect Lesson in Product Disposal for Luxury Goods

If there is one thing Singapore Airlines is known for, it is its passion for, and commitment to, providing luxury services. From the kind of seats its premier cabins are decked with, to its care packages in-flight, the airline is constantly about top-notch luxury. So when it decided to retire its business class seats and products, it found itself in a rather tricky spot: how best could it dispose of these items without sacrificing luxury and still preserving core values?

The Solution: Singapore Airlines x Bynd Artisan Lifestyle Collection
The Singapore Airlines x Bynd Artisan collection
The Singapore Airlines x Bynd Artisan collection. Image courtesy of Bynd Artisan

For luxury brands and service providers, disposing of old stock is always a challenge. Offering discounts may cause more harm than good and just tossing merchandise in the trash is the last thing any business wants to do, especially with the discussions around climate change heating up.

To resolve this challenge, Singapore Airlines launched The Upcycling Project and teamed up with Bynd Artisan for a four-piece lifestyle collection.

Using the materials from the now-retired business class cabins, both brands came up with a capsule collection that reflects who they are. There is the key holder with a strap wristlet and the words ‘Pull For Life Vest’ on it. The keyholder resembles the strap one finds under their seats and that is used to pull out the life vest in the unlikely event of landing on water.

The second item in the collection is a crossbody pouch sling featuring the well-known Singapore Airlines’ batik motif on the inside, ideal for keeping travel documents safe during a trip or for daily essentials, while the third, a timepiece & valet tray stand, designed for a dresser or a desk, is excellent for depositing watches and jewellery.

The tray and valet holder
All items in the collection are made from retired business-class products. Image courtesy of Bynd Artisans

The last product, a phone & name card stand which is useful for safeguarding relevant phone numbers and business cards also features the carrier’s iconic motif.

All the items in this collection are delivered in matching velvet drawstring bags to maintain the theme of affluence. Most importantly, the bags can be repurposed and reused for any purpose you choose.

Merchandise disposal for luxury brands
The items in the Singapore Airlines x Bynd Artisan collection come in velvet drawstring bags
Items come in velvet drawstring bags. Image courtesy of Bynd Artisan

In the last couple of years, as more brands have come under scrutiny, most have come up with creative ways to let go of deadstock or old merchandise. For example, in 2021, LVMH launched Nona Source, a platform that allows it to get rid of deadstock by selling it off. Others have chosen to go the route of ‘buyback programs’ to not only control the resale market but to also let go of unsold inventory.

For Singapore Airlines, the solution involves a team effort with a legacy brand for a collection that finds new and innovative uses for the about-to-be-discarded products. Perhaps, this is a strategy that other businesses, including yours, can adopt or at least learn from.

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