Kanye West’s First Yeezy Sneakers Headed For Auction, Valued At Over $1 Million
A pair of Kanye West‘s first Nike Yeezy sneakers, which he debuted on stage at the Grammys, is to be auctioned at Sotheby’s at an estimated price of $1 million.
The Nike Air Yeezy 1 sneakers are the prototypes for the Yeezy line developed by West and Mark Smith for Nike and revealed by the rapper during his performance at the 2008 Grammy Awards.
According to the auction company, starting on Monday, the sneakers would be offered for private sale, which means neither the final price nor the buyer will be released unless the individual comes forward. The auction house described them as among the most valuable sneakers ever brought to market.
The sneaker range was the first to be launched by West’s Yeezy brand and caused a fashion furore when he wore them during a 2008 Grammys performance.
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Previously, Nike had only worked with athletes and West’s shoe was a significant break for the US brand. The Air Yeezy 1 launched in a limited series in 2009, followed by the Air Yeezy 2 in 2012.
The following year, West ended his partnership with Nike, deeming his share of the revenue insufficient and went on to work with Adidas in 2014.
That partnership was a huge commercial success, generating almost $1.7 billion in revenue in 2020, according to an internal UBS bank note cited by Bloomberg.
Although not the sole designer of the shoe, West heavily influenced the look.
The sneakers, which are being sold by shoe collector Ryan Chang, will be on display in Hong Kong from April 16. In August last year, a pair of Nike Air Jordan 1 was sold for $615,000 by Christie’s.