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For the first time, sportstyle sneakers beat basketball sneakers

Il nuovo footwear trend della stagione che inizia?

For the first time, sportstyle sneakers beat basketball sneakers Il nuovo footwear trend della stagione che inizia?

In the ever-changing world of sneaker culture, the balance of power is shifting: for the first time in the resale world, "sportstyle" sneakers are about to destabilize the hegemony of basketball shoes. Brands such as Asics, Hoka, and Salomon, have over the years specialized in uniting the specialized sneaker market for trail running, running, and hiking with the real lifestyle market, also breaking into the luxury sneaker market: a week ago @le.syndrome showed a preview of Kenzo's new sneakers, part New Balance, part Asics, and part Hoka-One; Loewe has become a collaborator with On Running and GmbH has signed a collaboration with Asics that is expected to arrive in September. Louis Vuitton also recently unveiled its new LV Skate Sneaker, full of intricate details and designed by Colm Dillane, while Ganni has collaborated on two New Balance silhouettes that appeared recently. But sportstyle sneaker fever is manifesting itself more in the world of secondhand-which has now become one of the surest thermometers of new trends. 

The secondhand market for sportstyle sneaker hot or not? Salomon XT-6 Expanse #salomon #salomonxt6 #salomonxt6unboxing #баєр #баєрукраїна оригінальний звук - ентузіаст

The shift in consumer preferences towards "sportstyle" footwear is evident on resale platforms like StockX. Brands like On, Salomon, and Asics are experiencing significant growth in business activity. On's sales have surged over 15,000% year on year, while Salomon and Asics have seen a 202% and 72% increase, respectively. During the quarter ending on June 30th, Asics recorded notable growth in net sales within its "sportstyle" footwear category, marking a 51.5% year-on-year increase, reaching an impressive ¥28.1 billion ($193 million) in sales. Simultaneously, profits witnessed a significant uptick of 72.5%. This firmly positions the "sportstyle" segment as the second most profitable division for the Japanese sneaker giant, trailing only behind its core baseline. In parallel, On achieved remarkable growth with an impressive 52.3% year-on-year increase in sales, culminating at an impressive CHF 444.3 million ($504.8 million) during the first half of 2023.

While these brands are yet to match the sales volume of industry giants, sportstyle sneaker brands are rapidly narrowing the gap by leveraging strategies from their larger competitors and capitalizing on the pronounced preference that audiences give to highly performing sneakers, even for their everyday lives. Needless to say, the majority of those who wear these sneakers do so in their daily lives, rather than for mountain climbing or running in nature. Unlike fleeting trends like "chunky sneakers," the unique combination of value, durability, and style seems to have secured a place in the fashion landscape for this category, which now promises to become one of the strongest in the coming year. Sneakers like Salomon, for instance, are built to last ("We will never compromise performance for fashion," said Franco Fogliato, the brand's CEO to BoF), making them a more cost-effective investment compared to lifestyle sneakers that are prone to breaking or damage.

How fashion helped the rise of sportstyle sneakers

Collaborations have played a key role in the success of "sportstyle" brands. Partnerships with renowned fashion brands and designers have not only increased brand credibility but also stimulated demand for their core products. While Salomon today sells mostly sneakers to trail enthusiasts, for example, in recent years its biggest growth engine has come from its associations with fashion, from the urban rather than the athletic world. The brand's historic 2016 partnership with The Broken Arm and its subsequent collaborations paved the way for its growth. Likewise, Asics' collaborations with jjjjound and Cecilie Bahnsen have elevated its sneaker status, leading to rising resale prices. This was clearly helped by the recent trend of gorpcore, which dominated the scenes for several years both before and after the lockdown, creating a cult for performancewear in the city that went on to inspire a series of collaborations by these brands with the luxury world but also infiltrations into some of the leading archival fashion stores such as, for example, The Archivist in Paris or Herr Judit in Stockholm, in whose catalogs hiking models and shoes by Hoka, Asics, and Salomon appeared.