Today Reebok South Africa, in partnership with hip hop artist AKA (Kiernan Forbes), launched the inaugural limited edition of 600 pairs of #TheSneAKA shoes. This collaboration saw AKA designing his first-of-its-kind custom Classic shoe – and with that joining the ranks of global hip hop megastar alumni.
This is the first partnership between a global shoe brand and an African icon designing a shoe from conception and being involved in its creation right up until the end product. AKA spent many hours with Reebok’s design gurus at Reebok headquarters in Boston, USA to learn the ins-and-outs of turning a sneaker design concept into reality. The end result is a combined effort of the partnership formed between the two brands over the past four years.
“The first time I met AKA was back in 2015 when we arranged a meeting to get to know one another and to see how we could potentially work together in the future,” explains PJ Morilly, Brand Director Reebok South Africa. “In that very first meeting, AKA spoke of wanting to do a sneaker collaboration with Reebok. Four years later here we are, realising the vision, and making AKA the first South African artist to put his stamp on his very own brainchild #TheSneAKA.”
When it came to the design of #TheSneAKA, AKA – who’s affectionately known as Supa Mega –reflects that the inspiration behind the creation is the story of where he came from and his transition to stardom.
“For me, creating the #TheSneAKA is very much like creating music; you take what you have inside you and exude that into the final product,” he says. “I’m confident in what we have achieved, and know that people will remember me as the first South African artist who got to put his mark on Reebok’s global fashion influence.”
Because AKA is known as an artist who pushes the boundaries of harmony and trends, and also has a passion for the Reebok brand, the Reebok team entrusted him fully with the design of the shoe. They knew that the end result would not only be unique, but a reflection of AKA’s individuality, which is what Reebok considers an integral factor in its creative philosophy.
“Reebok is an iconic and timeless brand, and I feel privileged to be aligned with them,” explains AKA. “For me it’s a relationship that I value dearly, and it allows me to further influence the hip hop culture, the way people dress and the way people feel about themselves, which is ultimately what clothes are about. Clothes and footwear are about making yourself feel a certain way or expressing who you are. #TheSneAKA really embodies who I am as an artist, and I’m so excited to share them with South Africa.”
“#TheSneAKA is a highly exclusive, limited edition product, with only 600 pairs made. Each box is individually numbered and signed by myself, and is available for purchase today at Reebok.co.za. A limited number is also available for purchase in Reebok stores in Fourways Mall, Mall of Africa, Menlyn Park Shopping Centre and Canal Walk,” he concludes.
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