Resale of sneakers in 2019 has a very significant share of the fashion resale market. Like many other things, this hobby came to us from the USA. There, the hunt for rare sneakers has been going on for a long time, more than 30 years. In Russia, it began recently, 7–8 years ago, when people realized that there are many people on the Internet who want to buy rare things without having to stand in a night line to the store. There was a demand - a supply was born.
In 2014, according to StockX, the sneaker resale market in the US was estimated at $ 1 billion (at that time, the same amount could buy a good NBA team). The figure only increases every year. It is important to note that this is only the English-speaking market segment - although the main one, it is far from the only one.
How popular are resale
Mikhail Postnikov, co-founder of the themarket trading platform, says that the culture of resale has grown exponentially over the past three years. “In 2016, to a greater extent it was the occupation of enthusiasts who knew each other personally, and the queue of 50 people on the day of the start of sales was considered huge. At the same time, there were many problems in the secondary market for both buyers and sellers, which we volunteered to solve, 'explains Postnikov. - I will not associate our project with the growing popularity of reselling, as it is not for me to judge, but now drops of interesting collections, with which you can make money on resale, are carried out almost every week, and the number of those who try themselves in this business is in the thousands” …
The phenomenon of resale is insanely popular among Gen Z. For those born in the late 90s, this is the perfect way to make money. Most young people start to get involved in the reselling process at a very early age, because it is very simple, affordable, and money can be made quickly. Watch them line up in half-kilometer lines to get themselves a pair of fresh sneakers from Kanye West or Virgil Abloh - two of the main figures in the modern sneaker industry.
By the way, it was from West that the wave of sneaker resale began in Russia. His first personalized pair adidas (Yeezy Boost 350) aroused great interest among fans, because leaving the store could earn 3-4 times more from the starting price, which was already high - 17 thousand rubles. That is, one could get 50 thousand rubles simply by successfully getting into the queue or by winning the right to buy these sneakers in an impromptu lottery organized by the store.
The lottery is organized as follows. Stores invite potential buyers to fill out a questionnaire. There are few couples - there are many who want to, so the lucky ones are chosen randomly so that everyone has a chance. This compulsory measure was taken in order to sell limited models in a civilized and centralized manner. Of course, large open queues remain, and in the case of rare sneakers, fans sometimes stand in them for several days, but this happens less and less. Nobody wants to deal with an uncontrollable crowd, which is sometimes very aggressive and, in an effort to make money quickly, is ready to perform various unpleasant "feats".
Yeezy Boost 350 © press materials
“Fortunately or unfortunately, resell has become the main source of income for some of the guys,” says Konstantin Kachanov, a professional sneaker photographer, creator of the Sneakershot project. - More often these are young people who find it difficult to combine study with ordinary work, but it is much easier for them to walk around to take sneakers at the release (that is, at the start of sales - 's comment). Income can start from 20 thousand rubles. per month and reach several hundred thousand."
A successful result, according to Kachanov, depends on how much effort a person puts in, what schemes he comes up with and how many friends he has in stores. He advises paying attention to sneakers released in collaboration with famous artists or artists, and it is on the debut releases. The fact is that if later the brand continues to cooperate with the celebrity, then it is the sneakers from the first collaboration that will be the best investment. True, in the case of Kanye West and Travis Scott, as practice has shown, this does not always work.
How much can you earn
There is no limit to the amount of earnings, but on average, a good reseller receives 200-250 thousand rubles. per month. There are those who can earn this amount in just a couple of days - it all depends on the client and specific couples. There are two schemes that work. Either you buy a lot of sneakers and earn a small amount, or you try to get select pairs in small quantities, but which in the secondary market will cost several times, and sometimes dozens of times more expensive. Recently, brands have begun to increase circulation, so resellers who are used to earning from one pair to 4-5 starting prices are finding it increasingly difficult - now they need to “make volume”.
As elsewhere, there are leaders here who are doing the best. As a rule, this is due to the fact that they have a good customer base - their friends are ready to buy rare sneakers without much hesitation, money for these buyers is not a problem. Almost all celebrities have acquaintances with the main resellers of Russia, because only thanks to these people they can get rare goods without long waiting and searching. It is enough to say what you need and give money - then the reseller will do everything.
“In general, there are stories of people buying releases for years and just putting them in a closet. For example, in the United States, a man was able to buy a house for himself by simply selling about 400 pairs of numbered Jordans, which he collected for about 10 years,”says Konstantin Kachanov.
Where do they sell
Let's say you find a rare pair and want to sell it to make money. Your choice of sites is very limited. At the moment there are exactly six places where you can do this: eBay, Avito, Grailed, StockX, themarket and the VKontakte group. These are the most popular platforms for buying and selling limited edition sneakers, and the main transactions take place there.
“Resale is a spherical microeconomics in a vacuum,” says Mikhail Postnikov, “in most cases this process can be described by supply and demand curves. Of course, with an increase in the number of sellers, the marginality from the resale of each pair also falls, but the consumer only benefits from this. Postnikov clarifies that this does not mean that it is now impossible to make money on resale as such. There are two strategies - short term and long term. In the first option, the sale takes place on release days, when the competition is at its maximum, and the second option is suitable for the patient.
Yeezy Boost 350 v2 Zebra © Press Release
Over time, the number of new pairs in the box becomes less and less, which means that the supply level decreases. “There are risks here,” warns the co-founder of the themarket trading platform. Take the Yeezy Boost 350 v2 Zebra, for example. In February 2017, they were sold for 100-150 thousand rubles. per copy, now their price is around 30 thousand rubles. Why? Because so far there have been two re-releases of this release, which, of course, no one knew about. So this is a risky business, but those who do not take risks do not drink champagne."
How prices are formed
There is no clear pricing mechanism, there are only a few criteria that affect the rise in prices in the secondary market. Firstly, the number of couples released, and secondly, exclusivity, as, for example, in the case of a collaboration with an artist, artist or store (this rule does not always work). Third, the materials, and fourth, the popularity of the model among influential people in the industry. Quite a simple list, but these criteria together can generate huge earnings, so all such releases are tracked by connoisseurs of sneakers, namely, their demand forms the price.
“It is important that resale ceases to be stigmatized,” says Mikhail Postnikov. “This is a natural process from which, according to the invisible hand of the market, everyone benefits. Sellers make money, and buyers get the opportunity to purchase the pair they are interested in without the hassle of queuing. Plus, releases do not happen everywhere, so for many residents of the regions second-hand purchases are becoming the only option."
How profitable is it to invest in sneakers
It should be understood that not every investment will bring big profits over time, and some investments will not bring anything at all. Here you need to think over your strategy so as not to burn out by purchasing those sneakers that in 5-10 years will cost exactly the same as at the start. The running business attracted even such a big businessman as Yuri Milner, the owner of the DST Global venture fund, who invested in the StockX exchange.