Leading Off Coming out of The National, the hobby has not been short of headlines as some bombshell news hit the tape over the last few weeks with Fanatics and Panini both filing lawsuits against one another. First, Panini launched an antitrust suit against Fanatics, claiming they engage in anticompetitive activities and behave like a monopoly. In response, Fanatics … [Read more...] about Mint Condition: A Brief Look at the Panini vs Fanatics Cases
Leading Off Just a few weeks after PWCC announced employee layoffs, the company was acquired by Fanatics on May 22. This was just the latest ball to drop in a hobby that has come to expect that change is occurring and there are many unknowns around what the future hobby may look like. There’s a lot to break down here so let’s get into it… Mint Condition’s … [Read more...] about Mint Condition: Breaking Down Fanatics’ Acquisition of PWCC
Leading Off There haven’t been as many startups raising money in the hobby as compared to the last few years, but one caught my eye recently — Ludex, a collection management and pricing tool, raised $8 million in new funding to help accelerate growth. Use the app to scan a card and the company’s AI identifies what type it is (sport, player, product), its condition, and … [Read more...] about Mint Condition: Key Tasks for Start Up Collection Management Apps
Leading Off 2022 was an interesting year in the hobby — Fanatics acquired Topps, eBay acquired TCGplayer, startups like Altan Insights and Arena Club raised funding, the first MINT Collective was held in Las Vegas, most card prices declined, and more. So as we turn the calendar — new year, same hobby? In this edition of Mint Condition, I lay out my thoughts on what to … [Read more...] about Mint Condition: What’s Ahead for the Hobby in 2023?
If you take a step back, it is really interesting to think about how the hobby has evolved over the last decade, or even just the last two years. Not that long ago, eBay was the end all be all if you wanted to sell your cards quickly and safely online. Now, there are a number of reputable platforms that can facilitate transactions just as securely. Ten years ago, there … [Read more...] about Mint Condition: Key Elements in Building a Big Hobby Business
Leading Off A few months ago, I wrote a piece about how a potential economic downturn could impact the hobby and what companies and collectors alike should do to prepare. Fast forward and it still seems we are in a bit of an interesting place today with the hobby specifically and the economy overall. We are seeing record-breaking prices for cards ($12.6m for a ‘52 … [Read more...] about Mint Condition: Perspectives on Hobby Stability Against Potential Recession
Joel Belfer makes his SC Daily debut with this edition of Mint Condition, his newsletter focused on the business side of the hobby. Leading Off We don’t talk about the trading card game (“TCG”) piece of the collectibles industry (think Magic, Yu-Gi-Oh!, or Pokémon), but when the lines begin to blur between the players in the TCG and sports card spaces, it feels … [Read more...] about TCGplayer Accelerates Growth with Key Acquisition