Hong Kong celebrity Edison Chen Koon-hei’s streetwear brand CLOT recently released the AF1 Rose Gold Silk sneakers in cooperation with Nike.
Over 3,000 people lined up on the street outside a shop in Sai Wan overnight.
Intriguingly, around half of those in the queue were young people, and the rest were middle-aged.
While the youngsters were apparently trying to grab the sneakers for themselves, the middle-aged buyers were probably just aiming for some quick profits by flipping them.
The Rose Gold Silk sneakers employ silky smooth fabrications with a strong Chinese style. A pair would set you back HK$1,799.
CLOT had earlier launched red and black silk editions, which reportedly changed hands at above 10,000 yuan (US$1,450) on online shopping sites.
It might be hard to explain why young people are crazy about them, but if a designer bag can go for more than US$20,000, what can you say about people willing to pay over US$1,000 for a pair of chic sneakers?
Still, the prices at online platforms might have been manipulated by speculators.
Regardless, these reselling activities are good for the brand owners as the exorbitant secondary market prices only increase the craving for what now seem like highly sought after products. It’s almost like free advertising for the brands.
Ten years ago, Edison Chen was one of the most popular entertainment stars in Hong Kong. A sex scandal in 2008 forced him to leave the entertainment industry, but he proved to be highly resilient and eventually came back as a successful entrepreneur in the fashion business.
This article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on Jan 23
Translation by Julie Zhu
[Chinese version 中文版]
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