eBay Canada Shakes Up Sneaker Market with Authentication Program

Press Release

Canadian authentication centre opening next month to facilitate eBay ‘Authenticity Guarantee’ on sneakers over $100. Sneaker category is surging: eBay’s domestic Canadian sneaker sales increased 325% in 2020.

TORONTO, ON, April 14, 2021 – Today, eBay Canada announces the launch of Authenticity Guarantee for sneaker sales on the platform. Through this program, select sneakers sold on eBay for over $100 in Canada will be fully vetted and verified by an independent team of industry experts – Sneaker Con. The program launches early next month with the opening of a Canadian authentication centre, based in Toronto and entirely dedicated to sneakers.

“eBay is the original marketplace for the sneakerhead community, and we remain one of the largest channels that connects sneaker buyers and sellers, with a pair of sneakers sold every 1.5 seconds across North America last year,” said Rob Bigler, General Manager of eBay Canada. “With the launch of Authenticity Guarantee in Canada, we’re stepping up our sneaker game by building even more confidence and trust into the trading experience and reinforcing eBay as a top destination for sneakerheads across the country.”

The program launches in May with authentication on the most popular sneaker styles and brands on the marketplace – Yeezy, Jordan, Nike, adidas, New Balance, Asics, Vans, Reebok, Converse, and Puma – in new condition. By the end of the year, the program will ramp to include many more brands in both new and pre-owned condition.

This announcement builds on eBay Canada’s move to remove selling fees on all sneakers sold for $100 or more, which has helped attract more top sellers and bring even more coveted inventory to the marketplace. eBay has also created new positions on the Canadian team dedicated to sneakers – a category that has more than tripled in Canadian domestic sales last year. But alongside increased demand for luxury and collectible sneakers, authentication has become one of the most requested features in categories of high value and high passion.

“We are continually listening to our customers to create differentiated experiences that meet and exceed their needs, while building their trust and confidence,” said Bigler. “Investing in sneaker authentication is part of our broader business vision to build experiences that make us the most competitive and compelling platform for enthusiasts across our key categories. We want enthusiasts to know we’ve got their back and we’re here to help sellers build their businesses.”

To power Authenticity Guarantee, eBay has partnered with Sneaker Con, a leading organization for sneaker authentication, making eBay’s sneaker program the only one in the industry using an independent, third-party authenticator.

“We were founded by sneakerheads, for sneakerheads, so partnering with eBay comes naturally considering our mutual rich history in servicing the sneakerhead community,” said Alan Vinogradov, co-founder of Sneaker Con. “We’re excited to take our authentication skills and expertise to Canada to help power eBay’s Authenticity Guarantee for sneakers.”

How Authenticity Guarantee for Sneakers Works

When a sneakers purchase is made, the seller ships it directly to eBay's authentication centre for a comprehensive, multi-point physical inspection by independent third-party inspectors. Following this rigorous assessment, the sneakers are sent via expedited shipping to the buyer. Additional details include:

  • Proof of Authentication: Upon receiving the sneakers, the independent authenticator confirms they are consistent with the listing title, description, and images, and then performs a multi-point physical authentication inspection. An eBay tag embedded with NFC chip technology is attached to guarantee its authenticity and finalize the process, driving confidence in the collectability and resale value.
  • Third-Party Authentication: eBay has partnered with an industry leader, Sneaker Con, to create a new state-of-the-art facility in Canada – leveraging top authenticators in the industry, a robust checklist of product specifications, and best-in-class processes to ensure accuracy and efficiency. With rigorous inspection of the box, shoe, and accessories, the authentication underscores eBay's commitment to giving shoppers exactly what they want. 
  • Verified Returns: For sellers who choose to offer returns, eBay's sneaker authentication program ensures the exact item initially sold is returned to the seller, via a verified returns process. Returns are shipped back directly to the authentication centre, where the third-party experts verify each item and its condition before returning to the seller.

eBay Sneakers by the Numbers: 

  • eBay’s domestic Canadian sneakers sales grew 325% in 2020
  • Canadians can shop more than half a million luxury sneakers on eBay at any given time
  • A pair of sneakers sold on eBay every 1.5 seconds across North America last year
  • Top five most popular luxury sneaker brands purchased by Canadians on eBay are Nike, Jordan, Adidas, Yeezy, New Balance 
  • Most expensive sneakers purchased by a Canadian so far this year is the Air Jordan 1 “What The” Doernbecher, bought for more than $66,000 CAD

Looking to grow your sneaker business? Reach out to us at To shop sneakers, check out and follow @eBayCanada on Instagram and Facebook.

About eBay
eBay Inc. (Nasdaq: EBAY) is a global commerce leader that connects millions of buyers and sellers in 190 markets around the world. We exist to enable economic opportunity for individuals, entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations of all sizes. Founded in 1995 in San Jose, California, eBay is one of the world's largest and most vibrant marketplaces for discovering great value and unique selection. In 2020, eBay enabled $100 billion of gross merchandise volume. For more information about the company and its global portfolio of online brands, visit

Media Contact:
Kelly Scragg
Communications Manager, eBay Canada

Tom Horn
Senior Consultant, Proof Strategies