Eli Hayman was a USC student who took a leave of absence to start a sneaker store called Cookies N Kicks that has come to attract a whole host of celebrities, including Lil Yachty and Offset.
“Essentially what we do is, if you buy kicks, we give you cookies,” This is their fundamental business model and it is seeming to work out very well for Hayman.
Originally, Hayman created Wype the Hype while still a student at USC, which is a sneaker cleaning service previously on Melrose Avenue. Hayman had a tough time balacing the success of his new business with the rigors of school, so he decided to commit ot his new venture full time.
“When this place came up, I approached my good friend at the time and my business partner,” Hayman said. “I told him that I really thought this place would be killer for a sneaker store. It had a really nice look about it.”
Before his new venture, Hayman was a sneaker seller online making smaller profits. Hayman was inspired by the sneaker industry and the opportunity for profit that came with selling sneakers.
Since moving from Australlia as a child, Hayman has been interested in fashion and sneaker culture.
“I have the most random Converse collection of like 80 pairs of Converse,” Hayman said. “If I like it, I’ll buy it.”
His emphasis with this business is to have a more customer-focused experience comapred to other stores on Melrose/
Eli also put a basketball hoop in the store to encourage a more laid-back atmosphere where customers feel comfortable.
As a cofounder, he is focused on the financial side of the store and helps with influencer marketing as well.
Eventually, he says he wants to return to USC and complete his degree, but after he goes through his journey at Cookies n Kicks.