In the early 1990s, around the same time Apple launched its first colour desktop computer, the tech giant made a prototype pair of sneakers with its signature rainbow logo.
In the years that followed, the whereabouts of the shoes were unknown — until a friend of Leon Benrimon, director of modern and contemporary art at Heritage Auctions, found them at a garage sale in San Francisco.
Now, Heritage Auctions is auctioning off the pair at its Beverly Hills location. Bidding will begin at 11 am on June 11, and Benrimon tells Business Insider that he expects the sneakers to go for at least $A39,782. The starting bid will be $A19,900.
“These sneakers are truly unique and have rarely been seen or photographed,” he says. “It’s a true collectible for the tech community.”
Though Benrimon doesn’t know for sure, he says he believes only two pairs of the shoes exist. They likely didn’t garner enough interest when they were made in the ’90s, so Apple abandoned them as promotional items.
The Adidas sneakers, size 9 and a half, are made from the typical white leather material of the times. They feature Apple’s logo on the tongue and on the side. The soles are made from rubber that supposedly doesn’t leave skid marks.
With the Apple sneakers, Heritage will also sell other collectible shoes, surfboards, and skateboard decks in an auction called “The Future is Now.”
When Benrimon began exploring collectible sneakers, he mentioned to a few of his friends about doing a sneaker auction at Heritage. Then, one of them mentioned he found and bought an incredibly rare pair made by Apple.
“Knowing that he had these shoes was one of the deciding factors in putting this auction together,” Benrimon says.
As far as we know, Apple has no plans to manufacture sneakers. If the company did, we’d expect they’d have a few more Marty McFly-esque features, like automatic laces controlled by the wearer’s iPhone.