A new appearance on the scene.
Gone are the days when owning a Birkin or a pair of Air Jordan was unattainable: high-end handbags and sneakers may now turn into a currency of their own. Imagine owning a walk-in closet, with all of the fashion items you have always dreamed of. Now, imagine making them liquid to get short-term economic returns: holding an It-bag such as a Birkin or a fashion-forward pair of Yeezy has recently turned out to be more convenient than expected.
As the latest trends show, spotting the liquidity behind these assets has started to catch on, and the market is projected to grow by $4 from now, reaching $6 billion in 2025. This new trend has favored the rise of a secondary market, resulting in sky-high prices also at auction houses.
Started by a small group of stylish hobbyists, referred to as “sneakerheads”, who encouraged the hype around sneakers by considering them as an investment asset, this market has expanded up to become a real gold mine. After the late 90s, the advent of the Internet has spurred it in a major way enabling big fashion houses to keep an eye on their targets and also anticipating new fashion trends, also thanks to the rise of the so-called “influencers”.
Bags, purses, and sneakers are keeping up the advance, continuing to score big.
To date, that of the sneakers appears to be a disruptive phenomenon in constant evolution: it is one of the most profitable markets within the fashion industry and it won’t cease to enlarge. While for long time sneakers have mostly characterized and influenced the American culture, the new millennium has established their worldwide presence. Nowadays, they represent one of the coolest items among Millennials, the so-called “emotion seekers”: youngsters born between 1981 and 1996 that rather than mere material objects seek experiences. Also, being highly attentive to the latest trends, they pursue personalization and originality: for this reason, the basket of goods taken into consideration is widened, including high-end purses that are becoming more and more desirable when considering their quality and the purchasing experience.
One of the most coveted items is the It-bag “Birkin” by Hèrmes, which has been growing in value with an annual average of 14.2%. But how to differentiate the Birkin from traditional investments such as those in the equity or gold market? Looking at historical trends, it is possible to note how Birkin bags did not fluctuate over time, but constantly grew their value. Considered as highly secured, its value will further double in the next 10 years.
On the verge of changing.
All this buzz around sneakers has consequently raised the interest of new startups and apps whose aim is to broaden the financial inclusion and enable the exchange of these high-end products to a larger audience. One of them, which is spurring the change within the fintech landscape is Kellify, whose aim is to become the place where users supercharge their savings and fintech experiences just as StockX can be compared to the New York Stock Exchange of collectibles.
It is something that completely breaks the mold we have always used to: the possibility to finally invest choosing among a greater basket of assets, which does not stick to traditional items but goes far beyond, to include upcoming artists’ artworks, vintage cars, old-fashioned design objects or a fine whiskey.
What before seemed to be a process steered by homologation and aspiration, it is now the result of a rational, precise and data-driven panorama backed by AI — which opens the scene to new targets. Those who are triggered by these kinds of items, indeed, are beginning to regard them as tradable commodities. Shifting from an attempt of ostentation, high-end handbags and sneakers are bought following indicators such as functionality or usability rather than simply sticking to the aesthetical appeal. What is more, quality and rarity of the piece itself drive respectively the demand and supply, raising and lowing the prices on the market.
But in addition to this outcome, the major one is that the long and rational decision-making is surpassing the irrational and more impulsive aspect of owning a sought-after piece. Getting access to Kellify’s AI-driven data finally enables them to discover the products’ fair value and reconnect with personal finance by investing, insuring or lending their passion assets
To see the world from a different perspective, you need a new pair of lenses. In this case, AI.
When it comes to Next-gen savers’ investments and their spare change, Kellify’s algorithm is a real gem. And it seems to be close to Gen Z more than ever: Collectors’ sneakers or vintage purses are only some of the “passion assets” that Kellify’s AI can tackle, with the final goal of bringing these goods to retail banking channels (and banks of the future such as Instagram, Amazon, Apple, and WeChat). But how? The catalyst is tokenization, which allows investing even a few hundred euros in a share of a Patek Philippe, a pair of Air Jordan or a branded skateboard.
The new generations of investors can now match their passions with a personal “asset manager robot” who will guide them through the choice of their diversified basket, bringing rationality and predictions based on data to a market before characterized by imponderability and elitism. Indeed, Kellify looks at those who are eager to take advantage of liquidity and short-term returns of 12–18 months to finance other passion investments reaching limited and desirable collectibles.