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11/30/2021

eBay acquires sneaker authentication provider Sneaker Con

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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eBay sneakers
eBay is stepping up its sneaker authentication initiative.

eBay continues to establish itself as a secure provider of collectible sneakers.

The e-commerce giant has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the authentication business of Sneaker Con, a sneaker authenticator with operations in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia, and Germany. This acquisition is an extension of an ongoing collaboration between eBay and Sneaker Con to support the e-tailer’s Authenticity Guarantee.

Launched in October 2020, the Authenticity Guarantee offers full vetting and verification of select sneakers bought on the marketplace by a team of Sneaker Con’s industry experts. Through this program, all new and pre-owned collectible sneakers sold on eBay for over $100 in the U.S. are fully vetted and verified by an independent team of industry experts.

When a sneaker purchase is made, the seller ships it directly to eBay's independent third-party authentication facility for a comprehensive, multi-point physical inspection. An eBay tag, guaranteeing its authenticity is attached to the sneakers to finalize the process Following this assessment, the sneakers are sent via expedited shipping to the buyer.

eBay also partnered with Sneaker Con to create a new facility that leverages industry authenticators, a checklist of product specifications, and processes to ensure accuracy and efficiency. Authentication includes rigorous inspection of the box, shoe, and accessories.

For sellers who choose to offer returns, a verified returns process ships products back directly to the authentication center, where third-party experts verify each item and its condition before returning to the seller. The launch of authentication for collectible sneakers also built upon eBay canceling selling fees on any sneaker purchase of $100 or more. eBay offers similar fraud prevention initiatives aimed at highly valuable and collectible items such as luxury watches and sports memorabilia.

“eBay has always been a vibrant community of enthusiasts, with deeply knowledgeable buyers, sellers and employees,” said Jordan Sweetnam, senior VP and GM of eBay North America. “We partnered with Sneaker Con to launch sneaker authentication on eBay last year because the team shared our passion for the category – with best-in-class capabilities to deliver what our customers want most. The response to our authentication offering has been overwhelming, and this acquisition allows us to continue to transform eBay and bring a higher level of trust and confidence to every transaction.”  

“While Sneaker Con’s events business is not part of this transaction, these events will continue to represent the global sneaker community,” said Alan Vinogradov, CEO and co-founder of Sneaker Con. “eBay is the industry pioneer and the marketplace was my first exposure to the sneaker community. We at Sneaker Con remain committed to providing premier global events for our community to come together and share their passion for sneakers.”

The companies have signed and closed the deal as of Nov. 24, 2021. Further details were not disclosed.

Founded in 1995 in San Jose, Calif., eBay Inc. connects online buyers and sellers in more than 190 markets around the world.