Public.com goes all-in on alternative investing, launches Rare Sneaker Portfolio

Rick Steves

“The concept of curated Portfolios means that our members will be able to invest in categories like art, trading cards, royalties, and real estate without needing to become subject matter experts on individual assets.”

Online investing platform directed at retail consumers has unveiled a first-of-its-kind alternative asset which bundles together 77 pairs of iconic and rare sneakers into one investable asset, curated for investment potential— similar to how ETFs function for equities.

The Rare Sneaker Portfolio is Public’s first attempt at the concept of grouping assets like sneakers into a single alternative asset Portfolio. This allows for broad category exposure and further diversification.

Retail investors can get broad exposure to the sneaker market

Investors and sneaker fans can take advantage of the Rare Sneaker Portfolio to invest in the growing sneaker resale market, estimated by Cowen & Company to reach $30 billion by 2030.

The bundle provides a unique opportunity for investors to get broad exposure to the sneaker market rather than researching which individual pairs may have the highest appreciation value.

Culturally significant mainstays such as original Air Jordan Is, rare grails such as Nike Air Force 1 x Jay-Z “France” (only two pairs ever made), and artist collaborations with KAWS, Tom Sachs, Virgil Abloh, and Futura, are a few examples of what kind of sneakers have entered the exclusive portfolio.

1985 Air Jordan I BRED (recently sold for $16,250), Nike MAG (recently sold for $63,000), Nike SB Low “Freddy Krueger” (recently sold for $30,000), and FLOM Dunk (recently sold for $56,139), are a few other examples.

According to Public.com, sneakers in the Portfolio were evaluated based on a variety of factors including:

  • Cultural significance, i.e., associated with a celebrity, artist, athlete, or collector
  • Scarcity, with some sneakers in the Portfolio having never been released to the public
  • Condition, with the large majority in brand new, deadstock condition
  • Size, prioritizing men’s sizes 9-13, the most desirable sizes

Public.com to launch more portfolios: art, trading cards, royalties, and real estate

The Public.com platform debuted the Rare Sneaker Portfolio as its first alternative asset Portfolio, but it won’t be the last.

The online platforms plans to launch additional Portfolios this year in order to leverage the recently acquired Otis, a leading platform for investing in cultural assets and collectibles.

Keith Marshall, General Manager of Alternatives at Public, said: “We’re pleased to be able to introduce innovative new ways for our members to invest in alternative assets. While we’re beginning with sneakers, we’re actively exploring Portfolios across a variety of categories. The concept of curated Portfolios means that our members will be able to invest in categories like art, trading cards, royalties, and real estate without needing to become subject matter experts on individual assets.”

Public is an investing platform that allows everyone to invest in stocks, ETFs, crypto, and alternative assets, like fine art and collectibles—all in one place. The firm is famous for rejecting to sell trades to market makers or take money from Payment for Order Flow (PFOF).

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