OG sneakerheads can fondly remember the days of heading down to your local mom-and-pop sneaker store and lining up for the newest releases, sometimes camping days in advance just to secure a single pair. With the advent of the internet, as well as DTC methods being employed by brands like Nike, in-store drops and local shops slowly faded into a distant memory. Still, The Swoosh and Jordan Brand release products through large boutiques, like Social Status, Kith, and Sneakers n Stuff, often labeled as Tier 0 retailers. Those that fall under this banner get access to release some of the most limited products, like Off-White and Travis Scott collaborations. Recently, Jordan Brand introduced the world to their new NBHD storefronts with the release of the Air Jordan 1 High OG “Rebellionaire” which stayed exclusive to these retailers. Now with the Air Jordan 1 High OG “Heirloom” following a similar but more expansive NBHD release, let's break down what this moniker really means.
What are NBHD stores?
NBHD (read as Neighborhood) stores are more than just a retailer for Jordan Brand, they allow for more community-driven releases to go down as opposed to the typical online drop or raffle. Not only are the big-chain boutiques included but local stores that have a deeper sense of connection to the cities and areas they serve fall under this NBHD banner as well. With this program in its infancy, it seems that as time goes more storefronts, regions, and events will be added to the NBHD program as executive positions over at Jordan Brand now include responsibilities relating to these storefronts.
Why NBHD releases?
The last half-decade in the sneaker industry has shown that brands like Jordan are moving towards a DTC business model, cutting out many retailers in the process and forcing many to hop on a computer or mobile device in order to access sought-after releases. While this may be beneficial to their bottom line, the storytelling details and glamour around specific releases are often lost in translation as there is a disconnect between the consumer and the product when you only see the product through an online medium.
As mentioned previously, the launch of the Air Jordan 1 High OG “Rebellionaire” told the story of MJ's rebellious nature when he defied the NBA’s dress code by wearing the Nike Air Ship in games. This decision to make the release exclusive to NBHD storefronts allowed the story to be conveyed properly to the local community as well as connections to be made between consumers themselves and the storefronts. Some retailers, like Corporate in Cincinnati, Ohio held week-long events that included donation drives to non-profit organizations in the community, special workshops, and even a “Rebellionaire” branded van that drove around the city.
Events like that really drive home what Jordan Brand is trying to do with the NBHD program, making the experience of sneaker shopping encompass more than just sneakers. Creating a sense of community around products that naturally bring people together can help grow both Jordan Brand itself as well as the local storefronts participating in the release.
With the NBHD release of the Air Jordan 1 High OG “Heirloom” right around the corner, take a look at the list down below for participating NBHD retailers in your area. For future reference, these same locations and potentially new ones in the future should host any NBHD exclusive release. Keep it locked to our Twitter and the Sole Retriever mobile app to stay updated on the latest happenings in sneakers, streetwear, and more.
Images via Nike