An essential Berlin destination for any sneaker fan is Overkill sneaker boutique. Overkill carries a huge selection of sneakers from international brands including limited editions and exclusives and is among the best sneaker retailers in Europe. Robert Schultz, co-owner of overkill, talks to us about the sneakers scene in Berlin.
How did you decide to open a sneaker boutique?
The idea to open a sneakershop came through our love and passion for kicks since the early 90s. Back then it was really hard to get the latest trainers in Berlin. Some guys brought sneakers home from trips to the States but you always had to know someone to get a cool pair. And furthermore it was ridiculously expensive!
Is it getting harder with new sneaker boutiques popping here and there or is the sneaker market really that big?
No it’s not! But as the major companies want to raise the profit they give accounts to a lot of people hoping that more boutiques will create more customers. This way of thinking must fail!
What is special about the Berlin sneaker scene, why is it different or unique when compared to other cities around the world?
To be honest I don’t believe that Berlin is a sneaker hot spot. It always seems bigger than it is in reality. We do our best to get the city on the international map but the support from the companies is zero. So if you recognise Berlin as a sneaker city it is due to the hard work of the shops themselves. And Berlin is a poor city too if you compare it with London or New York. People that are spending money on kicks here aren’t locals usually.
Best sellers of 2010 so far?
Without a doubt: Overkill x New Balance 577 ‘Berlin wall pack’ a good example how we run things, make them internationally known and get only very little support from the big players.
Any new Overkill collaborations you’re currently working on and would like to talk about?
Only staff that is still work in progress! But we are looking for good contacts in Greece to expand the business. So if someone is up for a chat-talk to us! We love Greece!
Interview: Aris Karatarakis