Thanks to an e-commerce boom in the late 2000s, sneaker sales began to shift from shelves to URLs at a blistering rate. The ease of shopping from home proved irresistible for many, resulting in a downturn in sneaker sales through brick-and-mortar outlets, who were also battling ever-increasing overheads. For a while, snagging a coveted release with the click of a mouse was an exciting exercise; however, the proliferation of bots has made it all but impossible to compete, resulting in constant frustration.
In an unexpected twist, the industry looks to be pulling a complete 180: it seems sneakerheads are re-embracing the human touch when adding to their collection. Recently, one of Europe's largest online sneaker boutiques, Foot District, decided it was time to open their first street-side location. We caught up with co-founder Diego Martínez to find out what prompted the retailer to wander from the world wide web onto the streets of Madrid.