A newly-launched sports card marketplace has picked up $2.8 million in seed financing. Dibbs, which bills itself as a “real-time marketplace for trading fractional interests in sports cards,” is currently in Beta testing with several thousand users but expects to fully open to the public in April. Among the new investors are Courtside Ventures, Founder Collective, JDS Sports, Sports Card Investor and other angel investors including new PSA chairman Nat Turner and former NBA player Channing Frye.
Dibbs allows collectors to buy and sell physical cards, but also trade fractional interests of higher value cards 24/7. The fractional ownership model allows users to instantly trade any amount of interest in a card on live order books. If you believe in a certain player, you can instantly purchase shares of a quantity of some of his cards. Unlike other fractional platforms, Dibbs also offers transactions featuring cards that aren’t necessarily among the highest valued.
“Sports cards continue to shatter growth records, despite the market being slowed by archaic technology, cumbersome processes and extremely high costs,” claimed Evan Vandenberg, co-founder and CEO of Dibbs. “Compounded with outdated service models, and you have a market that is inaccessible to most sports fans and collectors. Dibbs represents a new era of collecting by democratizing the collectible market, increasing transparency for buyers and sellers, and eliminating the high-cost barriers to entry.”
Dibbs relies on fees associated with making trades on the platform.
The platform’s Player Collection feature enables collectors to buy, sell or trade cards in real-time based on player performance, cultural relevance and other market catalysts.
“Picking individual cards is difficult and can be very expensive. Learning the different variations, brands and other nuances of cards can also be extremely cumbersome and overwhelming,” says Christopher Leach, head of marketing at Dibbs. “Through our Player Collection feature, Dibbs enables collectors to use their sports knowledge to pick players and instantly build their collection of their favorite player’s premier cards in a single click, instead of picking individual card variants. This allows collectors to curate a diverse roster of premium sports cards and take advantage of a constantly changing market that is largely dependent on a player’s in-game performance and off-court brand – it’s the best parts of fantasy sports and card trading combined.”
Among the cards on the Dibbs platform are high-grade rookie cards of LeBron James, Tom Brady, Patrick Mahomes and Mike Trout as well as prominent cards of young players like Luka Doncic and Ronald Acuna, Jr.
“Fans have many ways to demonstrate their sports knowledge, like participating in season-long fantasy leagues or daily apps, but they’ve had no efficient way to utilize that skill over the long term until Dibbs,” says Eric Paley, co-founder and partner at Founder Collective. “Dibbs gives enthusiasts the easiest way to demonstrate their skill building a sports card collection in a market that has outperformed the S&P 500 over decades.”
“Having grown up collecting cards in the 90’s, it has been exciting to see the resurgence of this great hobby over the past year,” says Vasu Kulkarni, partner at Courtside Ventures. “Dibbs is going to make cards so much more accessible to the next generation of sports fans, not only by allowing for fractional ownership, but by also simplifying the entire buying and selling experience.
Dibbs is currently in public beta and available for download on iOS in the Apple App Store, with plans to expand to the web and Android. As of now, it requires an invite code to access the app. The company claims it has more than 30,000 people on a waitlist and is allowing new users into the platform daily.