You might recall the story on CardTarget.com published here a couple of weeks ago. The group’s latest purchase may raise some eyebrows in the vintage card community.
Raising $16,000 for the purchase of a baseball card might be a task that’s a bit too daunting, no matter how attractive or old it might be. There is, however, power in numbers and the membership role at CardTarget.com did pool the necessary resources in just a matter of hours on Friday. The group purchased a PSA 9 Nap Lajoie from Legacy Sports Rarities that had been listed on eBay.
The buy was the largest yet for members of the site’s Partial Shares Market, a sort of card co-op launched last year as an off-shoot of CardTarget’s original eTopps market.
"This card is a big deal for CardTarget because it is truly our first super premier card," CardTarget co-founder Mike Masinick told Sports Collectors Daily. "It’s the kind of card you dream about owning but know that you’ll never be able to attain."
The card, one of just four ever to reach the PSA 9 grade, was placed on hold by the dealer while Masinick negotiated the buy price. Other individual collectors were also interested, though, and he was given a deadline of 24 hours to find enough investors or the card would be sold elsewhere. It wasn’t a problem. By 10:30 PM that night, all of the funds had been raised. 126 different people purchased a piece of the Lajoie, some buying just one $10 share while others bought several.
The card will now be put into the site’s "secondary market", a sort of virtual trading floor with owners able to keep their shares or place them for sale. Those who want more shares or who missed the offering can post buy prices. The card itself, once delivered, will be housed with the group’s other holdings in a secure location.
Of course, some collectors won’t understand the concept of buying shares in a card they can’t actually possess, but it’s clear the prospect of at least having an ownership stake–no matter how small–is attractive to those who appreciate the scarcity. All of the 30+ cards currently in the Vintage Marketplace holdings are available to view on-line. CardTarget members have a stake in several T206 cards as well as an Allen & Ginter Charles Comiskey and several high grade post-war star and rookie cards.
Masinick’s goal is for CardTarget to build a world class sports card portfolio. "I truly feel that this is the excitement of our marketplace and the type of collection we can achieve with combined resources."