Canadian Auction House Grew Through Specialization

Hockey memorabilia is fourth in the pecking order for American collectors.  That’s not the case in Canada, where the passion runs deep.

Classic AuctionsClassic Auctions, based in Montreal, caters to fans who’d rather have a Rogie Vachon game-worn mask than Derek Jeter’s game-used glove.

Nine years ago, the company made headlines by selling off the collection of Hall of Famer Guy LaFleur.  Since then, other retired players and the families of deceased stars have come to Classic, asking them to sell off their own treasures.

The results are usually eye-popping.  Recently, Classic earned coast-to-coast publicity by selling one of the country’s greatest hockey artifacts; the jersey worn by Paul Henderson when he scored the game-winning goal over the USSR in the 1972 Summit Series.  The final price was a staggering $1.275 million.

Classic CEO Marc Juteau started the company when he was barely in his 20s.  Now, revenues measure in the millions.  Juteau talked with the Montreal Gazette about his auctions–and his company.