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10 sneakers that outperformed Bitcoin


Investors cash in on the sneaker craze.

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People often marvel at the success of crypto assets, especially Bitcoin, but did you know that you could make an even better return by transacting in collectible sneakers?

The rise of Bitcoin has been well documented, with the asset class going from 1 cent to over US$60,000 (AUD$79,912) in just over a decade.

In fact, the original crypto asset, Bitcoin, has nearly doubled in price since the start of the year (increasing by 88.6% at the time of writing), with investors who bought the asset on 1 January paying US$32,203 (AUD$43,081) per coin.

Despite impressive returns for investors, the humble sneaker which was bought at the right time could have actually outperformed the sector.

But knowing what sneaker to buy can be difficult.

As such, eBay will verify any shoe that is valued over $150 to ensure buyers and sellers can transact with confidence.

With the help of data from StockX here are 10 sneakers investors could've bought and sold throughout the year that outperformed Bitcoin.

10. Converse Chuck Taylor All-Star Vulcanized Hi (96.81% increase)

Picture not describedStarting with the final pair in Virgil Abloh's "The Ten Collection" the Converse sneaker was released in November 2017.

Launched as part of the "Ghosting Series", the pair comes in a white and ice blue colourway.

Investors who timed their purchases right and bought the sneaker on 15 January for US$1,631 saw their investment double by 10 June when a pair was sold for US$3,210.

9. Nike SB Dunk Low Grateful Dead Bears Orange (100.00% increase)

One for the Grateful Dead fans when Nike Skateboarding team and the band teamed up to create this special edition shoe.Picture not described

The Nike SB Dunk Low Grateful Dead Orange is designed as a tribute to the band, with a stylised dancing bear that appeared on the band's first album appearing on the sneaker.

First released in July 2020 investors could buy the shoe for US$110.

By 31 March a pair of the sneakers sold on StockX for US$2,572, before reaching a high by 19 October of US$5,144.

8. Nike SB Dunk Low Ben & Jerry's Chunky Dunky (101.05% increase)

Picture not describedIn May 2020 Nike SB and Ben & Jerry's ice cream joined forces to add an animated release to the SB series.

The combination brought about the Nike SB Dunk Low Ben & Jerry's Chunky Dunky, sneaker which was released in May of 2020 and retailed for US$100.

As of 15 July 2021 the shoe was valued at US$2,268 and by 6 September investors could sell it for US$4,560.

7. adidas Yeezy Slide (102.67% increase)

Picture not described

One for the Kanye West fans.

Investors in adidas Yeezy Slides would've doubled their money as the price of the shoe went from US$187 on 10 January before selling for US$379 on 8 October.

6. Jordan 1 Retro High – Trophy Room Chicago (124.90% increase)

Picture not describedJordan Brand and Trophy Room linked up to pay homage to Michael Jordan's first All-Star appearance at the 1985 NBA All-Star game, which was actually the release date of the Air Jordan 1s. This signature sneaker was originally released in February 2021.

Savvy investors could have purchased the shoe on 18 August for US$2,518 before making a tidy sum on 8 September selling it for US$5,663.

5. Nike Dune Low Cactus Plant Flea Market Spiral Sage (125.04%)

Only on 14 July could investors buy the shoe for US$6,118, as on 14 October it was selling for US$13,768.Picture not described

Following a few sneaker collaborations in 2019, Cactus Plant Flea Market and Nike combined to create a new pair of Dunk Lows, just before the holiday season in 2020.

Released on 18 November 2020, the CPFM and Nike collaboration features an oversized Nike Swoosh, extra padding to the tongue and detachable double lace flaps.

Going a step further, the entire upper is covered in Swarovski crystals resembling a disco ball.

The shoe originally retailed for US$550 a pair.

4. Nike Kobe 1 Protro Undefeated Flight Jacket (137.21% increase)

Picture not describedCalifornia-based footwear boutique UNDEFEATED in partnership with Nike Zoom Kobe 1 Proto teamed up in 2018 to create the "flight jacket" sneaker.

This military themed shoe was never released publicly, only given to friends and family of Nike Basketball and UNDEFEATED.

The rare shoe, sold for US$5,420 on 11 February only for another pair to sell for more than double a few months later at US$12,857 on 20 April.

3. Nike Dunk SB Low Supreme Black Cement (2002) (171.62% increase)

Back with Nike and this time teaming up with New York boutique Supreme to create the Nike SB Dunk Low "Black Cement".Picture not described

First released in 2020 the shoe is inspired by the Air Jordan 3s, with only 500 pairs being originally created and sold in New York City and Tokyo Supreme store locations.

Back in 2002 you could pick up a pair for US$65.

By 21 April the sneaker sold for US$5,079, only to see the price more than double with another pair selling for US$13,796 on 19 August 2021.

2. Nike Air Trainer SC High – White Metallic Platinum Hyper Cobalt (203% increase)

Picture not describedWhile a staple from the Nike brand during the 1990s, the Air Trainer SC High series has only appeared sparingly in the subsequent decades.

This sneaker, first released in 2014, has seen its value fluctuate on StockX from a low of US$176 on 14 January 2021 to a high of US$535 by 5 March 2021.

Not a bad return for any investor.

1. Jordan Why Not Zer0.3 LA Born (867% increase)

Perhaps a surprising winner given some of the collectible shoes, but an investor in the Jordan Why Not Zer0.3 LA Born could've added more than 8 times their value by buying and selling at the right time.Picture not described

Dropped as part of Nike's 2020 NBA All-Star collection, the shoe was created in homage to now LA Laker Russell Westbrook's hometown.

The 90s inspired design has ranged in value significantly, but if they were bought at a low on 25 September for US$43 and sold just short of a month later on 18 October for US$416, they could've banked in a tidy profit.

Bonus trivia fact

Because who doesn't like a fun fact?

We thought we would give you the most expensive shoe ever sold at auction.

During the 2008 Grammy Awards, Kanye West performed in a never-before seen, all-balk pair of Nike Air Yeezy 1s, which due to their first appearances were known as the Nike Air Yeezy 1 Grammy (prototype).

While the sneaker itself was never released by Nike, it became a key piece for any collector.

The shoes changed hands from time to time selling for between US$50,000 (AUD$66,967) to US$75,000 (AUD$100,425).

Following a record breaking Sotheby auction in 2021 one lucky investor became a millionaire, when the sneakers surprisingly sold for US$1.8 million (AUD$2.41 million).

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