It’ll be all-Kobe, all the time for Panini America beginning later this month. The company announced Friday that it will launch a ear-long trading card set, Kobe Anthology, devoted exclusively to the five-time NBA champion.
One five-card pack of Kobe Anthology cards will be included inside every hobby box of Panini America’s 2012-13 NBA products, beginning with the release of 2012-13 NBA Hoops later this month. The set includes 200 cards chronicling Bryant’s career, including rare autographs and game-worn memorabilia obtained from Bryant, who has an endorsement deal with the company. The program will include special promotions, including an opportunity for five lucky fans to meet Bryant face to face.
“Kobe Bryant has been a vital part of Panini America’s DNA since entering the U.S. marketplace three years ago,” said Mark Warsop, Panini America CEO. “He’s one of the most visible faces of our company and a member of the Panini family. We’re proud to honor him with Kobe Anthology, a massive undertaking that will serve as a key centerpiece for everything we do in the NBA this season.”
Bryant was the first spokesman signed by Panini America when it entered the United States in 2009 after landing exclusive rights to produce NBA trading cards. Since then, Bryant has been featured prominently in all of Panini America’s basketball initiatives, from launching the Panini Authentic division to appearing on the World’s Largest Trading Card as recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records.