Resale Madness

The sneaker resale market is now worth $1 billion.

How did we get here?

In the early years of sneaker culture, the intention of purchasing sneakers was to wear them. Before the internet, people wait ed in line for hours just to get the latest release and hype was strictly by word of mouth. It then became a game of not getting one pair, but two- one to rock and one to stock. Much of this still occurs today, but depending on who you ask, the phrase may now be: one to rock, one to stock, and one to sell.

Some say that the true ‘sneakerhead’ era began in 2005 with the release of the Nike SB Dunk Low Staple “NYC Pigeon”. With only 150 pairs produced, this was truly a limited release. When Jeff Staple opened the door of this shop, Reed Space, madness ensued and police were eventually called in order the shut down the release.

This shoe last sold for $8,500, according to resale site StockX. The condition was deadstock, meaning that it was new in box never worn. The shoe originally sold for $200, meaning that the seller of this shoe walked off with $8300, an amount 41.5x their original purchase price.

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Today, this resale game has become a livelihood for some, and a good one at that- Stadium Goods, popular shoe reseller in New York, raised a whopping $4.6 million in funding for expansion. This is indicative not only of the growth of the sneaker resale industry, but the sneaker industry itself.

As I move forward in this Information Architecture class, I will continue to dig deeper into what makes consumers tick, what constitutes a shoe to reach a status of that like the “NYC Pigeon”, and who will come out on top: Nike or Adidas.


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