It took nearly two months to catch fire but as the secondary market for Topps Project 2020 cards began to explode, sales of the newest cards also skyrocketed. On Wednesday, it reached a full boil.
Topps announced that one of the two cards sold on its website Monday and Tuesday had sold nearly 100,000 copies and another had sold over 64,000. That makes Keith Shore’s 1989 Topps Traded-inspired Ken Griffey Jr. and Joshua Vides’ 1969-style Nolan Ryan the top two sellers on the print-to-order platform since it launched during the last week of March.
The Griffey and Ryan were the 87th and 88th Project 2020 cards released in what will be a 400-card set featuring 20 different artists who are “reimagining” 20 classic Topps cards. The cards are released, two at a time, around midday Monday-Friday and are available for 48 hours.
Everyone’s taste is different and the artist’s works may not all be universally acclaimed but there’s no disputing the increase in interest for Project 2020. The amount of Griffey cards sold was nearly three times the previous sales high–for Ben Baller’s rendition of the 2011 Mike Trout that was sold several weeks ago.
In the early stages of the platform, most cards sold fewer than 4,000 copies–some fewer than half that amount. Those cards are now selling for three and four-figure prices on eBay, which has become a robust market for previously released cards as well as for buyers looking for a slightly cheaper way to buy individual cards prior to release.
Topps has now sold 650,102 Project 2020 cards in two months. Even at the lowest rate available ($12.50 per card for lots of 10), the revenue totals over $8 million, a staggering sum for a new release offered during a pandemic. With individual cards priced at $19.99, that revenue figure is very likely over $10 million.