How a 21-year-old man in Sydney owns two properties and earns $87,000 a month
Jordan Caruccio earns around $80,000 a month – but not everyone is happy how. Photo/news.com.au
A 21-year-old Sydneysider has managed to buy two investment properties through his lucrative business which earns A$80,000 ($87,000) a month.
Jordan Caruccio’s property portfolio is only possible because he stumbled upon a “niche market” when he was in high school that has exploded since the pandemic hit Australian shores two years ago.
Caruccio is a stock dealer, using inside knowledge and internet bots to find sought-after products and then resell them for a higher price.
A less endearing term that you may be more familiar with is a scalper.
He charges membership fees for people who join his private social media group, Lowkey Discord, which gives them the best advice when popular products are about to hit stores, virtually or in stores.
“During Covid it picked up a lot. People were trying to make money [because they’d] lost their jobs,” he told news.com.au. “It’s not illegal. I definitely would have gotten in trouble if it wasn’t legal.”
He admitted he harbors a lot of hatred for what he does online, including international tech website CNET calling Caruccio’s business “ethically unsound” in an article last year.
Either way, there is “so much demand” among Australians for his services that it makes him rich.
Caruccio is usually one of the first to know when new stock hits the Australian market, including limited-edition sneakers, apparel and, most recently, PlayStation consoles.
It uses a combination of programming and relationships with retail workers to get “early information” on new releases.
It all started when he was a teenager and stood in line all night long to get his hands on a pair of sneakers, like Yeezys or Air Jordans.
“It was money,” he said.
Because sneakers were limited to one person at these events, he used to “pull randoms off the street so we got more pairs” and paid them for their troubles. He would then sell the shoes and make a killing.
In high school, Caruccio also sold concert tickets (until it became illegal) and sold other merchandise on the side.
After graduating, he moved abroad to try his luck at becoming a professional footballer.
But while he was out of Australia, he came across groups in the US that notified their members when popular items would start selling to customers. This would eventually spark the idea of Lowkey Discord.
“The term is called a group of cooks – it just means you cook sneakers, you get a lot of items,” he said.
When his football career collapsed after being badly injured, he wanted to pour his passions elsewhere.
“Over time, I’ve made a lot of money” from America’s cook groups, he said.
“I thought there was a little vacuum in the Australian market, nobody was doing it at the time. That’s when this case came to mind.”
Caruccio launched the group of cooks in November 2019 – and a few months later Covid-19 arrived and his business started to thrive.
“From there, it got crazy,” he said.
For anyone who wants to join, they have to regularly pay a membership fee which then allows them to join a private group on a social platform called Discord, where it regularly posts information about new releases.
When it started, it only cost AU$10 for a monthly subscription, but that has since risen to AU$60.
Right now, it has about 1700 monthly members, 150 with annual membership, and another 50 with lifetime membership.
Documents seen by news.com.au show he has made around A$80,000 in sales every month since November last year. This figure doesn’t even include the amount he makes from the actual resale process, which he has another website for.
Many members clearly believe that shelling out hundreds of dollars a year is worth it.
Indeed, Caruccio said his customers could have “easily” made a profit of $20,000 last year on PlayStations alone. Many were able to buy multiple game consoles for $750 and sell them for $1,500.
“It was the easiest, not just for me but for all the members,” he said.
As Caruccio’s business grew, he hired software developers to create codes to scour the Internet so he could alert his members whenever a product dropped.
He also receives leaks from retail employees at places like Nike, Footlocker, and JD Sports about their company’s latest releases, allowing him to take a back seat to everyone else.
In exchange for this information, he generously pays these insiders and keeps their identities secret.
He has been cornered by senior retail executives who recognize him and demand that he tell them who his sources are.
“I’ve been flagged many times, even when I’m going to stores and stuff,” he added.
The 21-year-old says his expenses are only around $6,000 a month, after paying his six staff members as well as insiders who contacted him. So after pocketing the rest, he decided it was time to invest in real estate.
Six months ago he bought a partially built apartment in Hurstville, in Sydney’s south.
The two-bedroom apartment required a deposit of $99,000 and cost $1,005,000 in total.
Just last week he dipped his toe in the market again, snapping up an off-plan two-bedroom house in Canberra, using a $34,000 down payment.
What Caruccio is doing is perfectly legal even though it may be morally questionable.
He has registered his business and has an Australian business number.
When an individual legitimately purchases a product, there is no law preventing them from reselling it because the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) prohibits anti-competitive behavior, according to SprintLaw.
The exception is ticket scalping, with various Australian states cracking down on tickets to live events in recent years after scalping website Viagogo sparked outrage for selling them at much higher rates.
In fact, NSW Fair Trading received over 1000 complaints about the practice, which prompted new legislation in 2018.
There is no federal legislation regulating banknote scalping, but almost all Australian states have their own legislation criminalizing the practice.
Tasmania and the Northern Territory are the only two jurisdictions without legislation.
Most states adhere to a 10% rule of thumb, whereby the ticket cannot be sold for more than one tenth of its original value.
In 2020, Viagogo was fined $7 million for misleading customers into scalping tickets and pretending to be the official website to buy them.