The sneaker market is white hot right now. Thanks to the rise of resale marketplaces like StockX and GOAT, millions of new collectors are entering sneaker culture. Pushing toward a casual cool fashion statement, collectable kicks and strategic sneaker collabs are rapidly expanding the industry footprint. From Virgil Abloh’s footwear lighting up the runway to PacSun’s kicks collection, there’s something for everyone.
The growth of sneaker culture has also led to a rapid rise in prices. Standout kicks that once retailed for $200, can cost $500 in a matter of months, due to massive demand and limited supply. A growing number of sneakerheads are now trading more to acquire collector level kicks for their collection.
Enter—Tradeblock, an app that officially launched in May 2021 after a solid beta run. Co-founded by three childhood friends and huge sneakerheads, Mbiyimoh Ghogomu, Darren Smith and Tony Malveaux, the new sneaker trading app is a growing online community that provides a safe and fun route to connecting with other sneakerheads and trading kicks.
“If you’re into sneakers, trading is just fun,” says Mbiyimoh Ghogomu, cofounder and CEO of Tradeblock, “but it also helps increase access for folks who may not be able to spend a rent check every time they want a new pair of shoes.”
The Tradeblock app invites sneakerheads to build a public profile that displays both their Closet and Wishlist. Members engage in barter-based trade negotiations, almost like trading players in fantasy sports. When a trade is mutually agreed to, shoes are sent off to Tradeblock’s authentication center and then sent to their new owners.
With tens of thousands of sneakerheads on the app already, Tradeblock has been busy facilitating some blockbuster trades. In one trade, a member bundled up three of the hottest shoes in the game today— the Off-White Jordan 1 UNC, the Travis Scott Jordan 1 High, and the Jordan 1 High Mocha — in order to secure a pair of Off-White Jordan 1 Euros, which were released exclusively in Europe in 2018. At the time, those Euros were worth about $4,300 in the resale market; the three-shoe bundle had a cumulative value of around $4,600, making the total value of the trade nearly $9,000.
A Ma Manière Jordan 3s, designed in collaboration with the world-renowned A Ma Manière boutique, are already being dubbed the sneaker of the year by many enthusiasts, and the Travis Scott Jordan British Khakis, part of Nike’s partnership with hip hop artist Travis Scott, have been highly sought after by Jordan aficionados since their release in April. Both of these sneakers have already been traded more than 100 times on Tradeblock.
The Tradeblock app is free to download and use — members only pay a fee when they successfully negotiate a trade. The cofounders are also hosting a number of in-person sneakerhead kick backs and small events across the country to help sneakerheads meet in real life. You can learn more about Tradeblock on www.tradeblock.us. The Tradeblock app is available for download on both iOS and Android.