Insight & Analysis

Steve Jobs’ Birkenstocks sell for US$218,000 at auction

Published: Nov 2022

A pair of tatty sandals worn by Steve Jobs in the early days of Apple recently sold at auction in New York for US$218,750.

The brown suede Birkenstock Arizonas were worn by Jobs in the 70s and 80s during “many pivotal moments in Apple’s history,” according to the auction house, Julien’s Auctions.

Julien’s Auctions said this was the highest price ever paid for a pair of sandals at auction, and a record for footwear at the auction house. They had originally estimated the brown suede and leather sandals would go for $60,000 to $80,000.

Mark Sheff who managed Jobs’ Albany Estate, California in the 80s had the sandals in a collection of very few things left by Jobs. “We kept some, shared some with the landscapers and friends and brought some to Goodwill. The collection we ended up with is quite random,” Sheff said, according to the auction house.

The winning bidder wanted to remain anonymous, but the Birkenstocks also come with a non-fungible token (NFT) that is a 360° digital representation of the sandals. The runner-up bid was from a potential buyer in China.

However, this doesn’t come close to the most someone has paid for footwear at auction.

Nike Air Ships worn by Michael Jordan in 1984 sold for US$1.47m last year and a pair of black Nikes worn by Kanye West at the 2008 Grammys sold for US$1.8m!

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