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While March Madness may not be on your mind during your spring cleaning, it is on the minds of every big sneaker company in the game. Whether you bet your life savings on your bracket, or you simply enjoy watching the games, March Madness is an exciting time of the year for the NCAA. For shoe brands, however, March Madness is a hint as to how yearly sales will shake out. 

Jeff Van-Sinderen, a footwear and apparel industry analyst, explains that during March Madness fans look at “what brands the players are wearing, the new styles promoted by the shoe brands and so on. Of course, the rising star players draw a lot of attention, including what shoes they are wearing”. He explains that this is also a time for brands to look at what players they want to sponsor in the future. If they find a star player that shows promise, it is more likely that they will want to build a relationship with them as their career goes on. On the other hand, it can be detrimental such as it was in 2019, when Zion’s left Nike sneaker split open mid-game while the whole world was watching.

This year, 60% of the teams in the tournament are sporting Nike, but there’s also appearances from brands such as Adidas and Under Armour. Nike is specifically pushing to highlight Air Jordan’s this year as they want to market the lifestyle side of the brand during the games. When it comes to Jordans specifically, Nike’s marketing drive has paid off. Nike’s revenue was up 65% in 2021 and is expected to climb even more next year.

While you may not care about sneaker sales in the next year, you may be interested to know how much your dad’s old Nike sneakers that have been sitting in the garage for 20 years are worth. Instead of tossing them in the dumpster, take a look at eBay. Selling a pair of Nike “vintage” sneakers on eBay could make you a couple hundred to a thousand dollars depending on the condition. If it is considered a “collector’s pair” you could be making upwards of $5,000 on just one pair. There is a whole world of sneaker collectors vying for a rare pair.

Surprisingly, Nike plays a big part in the resell market as well. By making sure that Nike sneakers are always a little low on supply and a little too high in demand, they are able to keep these resell prices so high. Not to mention the persistent issues in the supply chain has made the demand for any pair of Nike’s (new or used) rise and the resale value has actually gone up by 32% in the last year or so. Nike has almost built itself a second market that allows them to profit off of the two owners for one pair of shoes.

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