PSA’s parent company is planning to offer a vault service for trading cards. Collectors, the newly rebranded, shortened moniker for what used to be Collectors Universe, announced Wednesday that it plans to create a secure 11,000-square-foot facility in Delaware that will allow customers to grade cards and have them immediately transferred to its vault.
PWCC, Goldin, Beckett and Alt are among the other trading card businesses that first began offering vault service, storing cards for owners who wish to have them securely stored offsite. Through a vault account, customers can direct the cards to be sold or auctioned and have the company do the work.
Collectors also announced it had raised $100 million in new funding, bringing the company’s valuation to $4.3 billion. Just 13 months ago, Collectors Universe was purchased by Nat Turner and a group of other investors for $853 million. The new funding, raised from existing investors, “will be used to grow the business further and invest in new technology that further improves the experience for hobbyists,” according to a company statement.
“Our vision has always been to reinvest via technology and capacity expansion into our brands and simplify the collecting experience through innovation,” said Turner, the company’s CEO. “As a long-time collector, I’m personally passionate about the industry, and have been thrilled to be a part of its overall growth the last several years. We’re going to continue focusing on improving the customer experience and providing the trusted tools that every collector needs.”
The expanding interest in sports and gaming cards in recent years has played out in the explosive growth of Collectors. In a Forbes story published Wednesday, the company revealed that is now has more than 100 people devoted to grading cards, more than double the number of employees that made up the department at the start of last year. According to Gem Rate, PSA has recently pushed its grading output to well over 30,000 cards per day.
Forbes reported that Collectors currently has about $1.6 billion worth of cards inside its facilities.
That still hasn’t eliminated a backlog that reached about 13 million cards prior to the suspension of what had been the company’s normal grading tiers. That move took place a year ago Wednesday but Collectors is still working through the massive backlog. In a single day just prior to the shutdown of lower tier service levels, they received more than 660,000 cards in a single day, an avalanche of packages that stretched the local postal service to the breaking point.
PSA has recently begun opening up limited submissions at $50 per card to members of its Collectors Club and Turner has stated he hopes the company can restore normal service levels later this year. However, it’s unlikely collectors will see bulk service options or specials that allowed uses to submit in an $8-$12 range. The grading of lower cost modern era cards at that level is what led to the shutdown last year.
Collectors currently has a total of about 1,200 employees with plans to add nearly 800 more in 2022. As we’ve reported, it will open a large new facility in New Jersey later this year and another office in Seattle in addition to an office in Japan.