- The sneaker resale industry is booming and could be worth $US6 billion globally by 2025, according to Cowen & Co. estimates.
- Rare and sought after pairs can increase in value over time.
- Online luxury consignment retailer The RealReal combed its data to find the top nine sneakers with the highest resale value in 2019.
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The sneaker resale business is huge.
According to Cowen & Co. estimates, the sneaker resale market could be worth $US6 billion globally by 2025.
Sneakers on online marketplaces like StockX and Stadium Goods have resold for as high as $US20,000. Sneaker resellers who have figured out the market are able to earn thousands of dollars in sales from reselling popular, hyped-up shoes. Business Insider recently interviewed a 27-year-old sneakerhead whose fleet of four stores earned $US6.9 million in sales last year.
Online luxury consignment retailer The RealReal combed its data to find the top nine sneakers with the highest resale value in 2019. The Off-White and Nike collaboration with the Air Jordan 1 “Chicago” sneakers were one of the more popular shoes of the year, originally selling at retail for around $US190 and reselling for an average of $US3,450.
“Virgil Abloh’s Off-White collaboration with Nike in 2017 permanently altered the sneaker landscape and resell market by catapulting sneakers to the forefront of the mainstream fashion consciousness as well as further blurring the lines between luxury and streetwear,” said Amir Azarcon, a sneaker and streetwear expert with The RealReal.
Here are the nine most valuable sneakers of 2019 – listed in ascending order by percentage value increase – according to data from The RealReal, plus commentary from Azarcon.
9. Off White x Nike 2017 The 10: Air Max 90
Average price at retail: $US160
Average reselling price: $US1,345
Average value increase: 841%
This pair for “The Ten” collection was designed in 1990 and features a translucent outsole. Nike designer Tinker Hatfield was inspired by the Centre Pompidou in Paris, a building that features interior elements on the exterior.
8. Yeezy 350 Boost V2 Black Static Reflective
Average price at retail: $US220
Average reselling price: $US1,895
Average value increase: 861%
Kanye West’s Yeezy collaboration with Adidas generally ranks among the more hyped releases. This limited edition Yeezy was the first 350 V2 to resell for over $US1,000 in years.
7. Off White x Converse Chuck Taylor 2018 Chuck Taylor All Star Hi
Average price at retail: $US130
Average reselling price: $US1,134
Average value increase: 872%
This was the only non-Nike brand sneaker to be released from Virgil Abloh’s “The Ten” collection, though Converse is owned by Nike. Production delays helped fuel hype for this sneaker, which appears translucent throughout the entire silhouette.
6. Nike Air Jordan 1 Retro High OG Travis Scott
Average price at retail: $US175
Average reselling price: $US1,795
Average value increase: 1,026%
“The combination of the most hyped sneaker (Jordan 1) with the most hyped artist (Travis Scott) is a surefire recipe for success, something that Nike and Jordan brand have mastered,” explained Azarcon.
5. Nike Dunk High Pro UNKLE SB
Average price at retail: $US70
Average reselling price: $US836.50
Average value increase: 1,195%
This shoe was released in 2004 during a peak of Nike SB sneakers. A collaboration between Nike and Mo’ Wax record label trip-hop group UNKLE, this sneaker also features artwork from graffiti artist Futura.
4. Nike x Kanye West Air Yeezy Red October
Average price at retail: $US250
Average reselling price: $US3,250
Average value increase: 1,300%
These sneakers were Kanye West’s third colorway of his second Nike shoe. They were the last shoes he made with Nike before switching over to Adidas.
“At the time no one knew that this would be his final collaboration with Nike, but given the impact that these sneakers had, the results of which are still being felt today, it’s easy to see why they are the most expensive and most coveted Kanye sneakers,” explained Azarcon.
3. Nike X Tom Sachs Mars Yard 2.0
Average price at retail: $US200
Average reselling price: $US3,000
Average value increase: 1,500%
This sneaker, a collaboration with Nike and artist Tom Sachs, is widely considered one of the top sneakers of the decade. Sachs designed the sneaker to look like shoes that rocket scientists wear.
2. Off White X Nike The Ten Air Jordan Chicago 1
Average price at retail: $US190
Average reselling price: $US3,450
Average value increase: 1,816%
The RealReal said this was one of the most popular sneakers of 2019, thanks to the combination of the iconic colorways and silhouette.
“Virgil Abloh’s Off-White collaboration with Nike in 2017 permanently altered the sneaker landscape and resell market by catapulting sneakers to the forefront of the mainstream fashion consciousness as well as further blurring the lines between luxury and streetwear,” explained Azarcon.
1. Off White x Nike Air Force 1 MoMA Low
Average price at retail: $US175
Average reselling price: $US3,750
Average value increase: 2,143%
“Widely regarded by many as a ‘literal’ work of sneaker art, this has been the most limited Off-White Nike release to date and therefore the most expensive pair on the resale market,” said Azarcon. This exclusive sneaker was released in a limited amount at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.
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