Alex Samoilescu

Campless: Sneakerhead Information Exchange

Campless is a stock exchange - for sneakers; real time market data is collected, analyzed, and visualized as if sneakers were a financial instrument.


Most serious collectors, even those who never engage in the business side of their chosen hobby, exhibit the same market behaviors of a stock trader. They are driven by the same fundamental tenets: supply & demand, speculation and value. Extreme sneaker collectors, or "sneakerheads", are no different. They "camp out" in front of sneaker stores (sometimes for multiple days and nights) to get their hands on a special pair or limited release. Supply is low, demand is high and they’re quite adept at speculating which pair will appreciate - either financially, or in the mind’s eye of their collection.

“Resellers” post new inventory on eBay (at great markup) before even leaving the store, but most are collectors. The definition of value for both is intrinsically tied to the reseller’s price, but the collector will realize his differently - to quietly admire a pair as it sits in his sneaker closet, or to be given the knowing nod of approval from a passing fellow sneakerhead on the street, or to flaunt his “heat” on the modern day equivalent of both – social media.

The digital economy is changing the sneakerhead game – and at the heart of the new landscape is information. Campless is the first dynamic, analytic-driven model for the sneakerhead market. We track, collect and analyze resell sneaker sales (eBay) over time, and are able to visualize and present information that allows sneakerheads to make better decisions about their “investments.” Average price, sales volume, volatility, and resell price premium are just some of the quantitative metrics tracked. As we expand into qualitative data – for example, Twitter activity as a measure of marketplace “hype” – the complete “sneakerhead data” picture will emerge. Whether for the reseller or collector, the goal is the same – use data to acquire more sneakers for less money.

On the opposite end of the market, the brands that make these sneakers (Nike, etc.) and the retailers who sell them (Foot Locker, etc.) devote significant marketing and PR resources to their most die-hard customers. Brand building and sneakerhead cache is created by the few, for the many, and fuels the industry. (Air Jordan, anyone?) However, traditional market research companies in the sports and apparel industry have yet to embrace the data that exists outside of retail cash registers. The Campless corollary to creating data for sneakerheads to buy more kicks is providing corporate sneaker titans with unique data on its most important customers - to sell more kicks.