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The Luxury Sneaker Craze Has Landed in Hong Kong

Sneaker Con, a sneakerhead mecca of sorts, made its Hong Kong debut late last month, helping to introduce luxury sneakers to the Asian market.

The premier sneaker event, which took place Aug. 26, featured more than 60,000 pairs of shoes, highlighting an untapped market for sneaker-connoisseurs, according to a Jing Daily report. Asia-based sneakerheads were encouraged to buy, sell and trade as many shoes as they could carry. NBA champion Ray Allen made an appearance as the special guest for the event.

“New York is not the center of the world,” Alan Vinogradov, co-founder of Sneaker Con, said in an interview with local media and reported by Jing Daily, pointing to the fact that the sneaker craze can be just as alive and kicking in multiple markets around the world, not just in the U.S., as had been the focus when Sneaker Con made its 2009 debut in New York. “The price of a pair of sneakers promoted by a Chinese celebrity can go through the roof.”

Sneaker Con now has iterations in Atlanta and Toronto as well.

Vinogradov said the show brought roughly 6,500 visitors, 40 percent hailing from Hong Kong, 30 percent from Mainland China and the remaining percentage from surrounding areas in Asia.

As athleisure continues to make its mark in the U.S., and with streetwear retailers like Stadium Goods expanding to Europe with the help of websites like Zalando, and high-profile streetwear collaborations like Pharrell Williams and Adidas, Pony and Joey Bada$$ and more, Sneaker Con Hong Kong’s success comes as little surprise.