- StockX is expanding its global reach with a new authentication center in Australia.
- The startup hit a $3.8 billion valuation in April after announcing $255 million in fresh funding.
- Sources previously told Insider that an IPO could be in the works in 2021 for the resell platform.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
StockX is set to continue its global expansion with the opening of an authentication center in Melbourne, Australia, on Thursday.
It’s the company’s first such center on the continent, which has become a hotbed for sneaker reselling.
In Australia, the volume of bought items, including sneakers and electronics, increased by 250% in the first quarter year over year, with sales jumping by 240%, said Greg Schwartz, StockX’s cofounder and chief operating officer.
“We see growth like that and we know that based on this highly engaged sneaker community, it’s an area that we want to double down on,” Schwartz told Insider.
Though StockX launched international selling in 2017, it’s expanded its global reach by standing up local authentication and drop-off centers in numerous countries. StockX more than doubled the number of sellers outside the US in 2020. In November, StockX announced it would also be opening authentication centers in China and Canada after recently opening one in Portland, Oregon, in the same quarter.
The authentication center in Australia will make it easier for local StockX users to buy and sell authenticated products nationally, decrease costs associated with international shipping, and speed up payout times for sellers. At launch, the center will employ 17 people and authenticate a variety of products across the StockX marketplace, from sneakers to apparel.
Inside StockX’s growth
In five years StockX has become a leading marketplace that lives at the nexus of sneakers and e-commerce. Last month, it raised an additional $255 million in funding, bringing its valuation to $3.8 billion.
StockX’s ask-bid model, which publicizes the sales history of each product, is a main differentiator for the platform, Schwartz said.
“If you look across that competitive landscape, you’re not going to see the same level of transparency of data where your buyer or seller is being empowered with historical pricing information,” he said.
Schwartz pointed to StockX’s diverse categories, which include electronics and collectibles in addition to sneakers. He said the variety, which caters to Gen Z consumers, makes StockX stand out.
Other sneaker-resell platforms are seeing strong growth. Goat hit unicorn status in September when it raised an additional $100 million in a Series E funding round and reached a $1.75 billion valuation. The company, which began its international expansion in 2019 when it opened an authentication facility in China, serves 30 million members in 170 countries, with 13 authentication centers in the US, Europe, and Asia.
eBay, which launched an authentication program for luxury watches and sneakers in October, has reported triple-digit year over year growth in its sneaker business in four straight quarters. On Tuesday it announced plans to establish an authentication center in Australia, too, while expanding its sneaker-authentication guarantee for pairs bought from US sellers by Australians. Previously, authenticated sneakers from eBay were available only to buyers in North America.
StockX itself reported in April that the number of buyers and sellers on its platform outside of the US grew by 135% and 120%, respectively, in the first three months of this year. The Detroit company sells in over 200 countries and territories.
People close to the company previously told Insider it was looking to go public as soon as this year. (Schwartz declined to share any details about the possibility of an IPO.)
“Right now we’re just heads down really focused on so much work in front of us as we try to just really continue expanding globally and across categories,” Schwartz said.
“We feel like there are massive opportunities ahead, and we’re just trying to execute, to make sure that we’re providing a great experience for our customers and continuing to scale the business.”
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