Huge surge of interest in sports cards and other memorabilia, which began during the COVID pandemic
KSNF/KODE – A mint condition Mickey Mantle baseball card recently sold for $12.6 million, exploding into the record books as the highest paid sports memorabilia, in a market that has become more lucrative in recent times years.
Last summer, the heavyweight boxing belt picked up by Muhammad Ali during “Rumble in the Jungle” in 1974 sold for nearly $6.2 million.
All are part of a booming market for sports collectibles.
Prices have gone up, not only for the rarest items, but also for pieces that may have gathered dust in someone’s basement or attic. Most of these items land on mainstream auction sites like eBay.
Jarred Jennings, a 43-year-old sports memorabilia collector from Springfield, Missouri, has been collecting sports cards since 1988, non-stop. In fact, Jennings said collecting and selling sports memorabilia has been his main source of income for the past ten years.
“I’ve seen a huge surge in interest in sports cards and other memorabilia, which started during the pandemic era when everyone was locked down. A lot of interest in collecting has also been spurred by the Chicago Bulls’ ‘Last Dance’ documentary,” Jennings said.
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You will find many Jennings sports collectibles on eBay.
One item he has listed for sale is a Mickey Mantle postcard of Joplin.
“Since I’ve been in the sports card industry, Mickey Mantle has always been an interesting person, as far as collecting goes. You could say he’s the most collectible athlete of all time,” Jennings said.
Jennings said the Mickey Mantle postcard he listed on eBay was made by Holiday Inn in 1962.
“Mantle was part of a group of hotel owners in the Ozarks. I grew up in Forsyth, Missouri and was always interested in the Yankees baseball player.
Market research and consulting firm, Decipher Market Insights, has released its latest report, titled “Sports Memorabilia Market: Size, Statistics, Growth Trend Analysis, and Forecast Report, 2022-2032”. The research estimates the sports memorabilia market size at $26 billion in 2021 and is expected to reach $227.2 billion by 2032.
The report aligns with what sports memorabilia collectors, like Jarred Jennings, are saying about the growing market for sports memorabilia.
“The dramatic increase in interest in collectibles has spurred demand for sports memorabilia. Demand has exploded with digitization (fuelled by the COVID outbreak) and easy access to collectibles via online platforms. eBay has benefited greatly from lockdown situations which have led to a surge in online sales Goldin Auctions has become the largest auction house, doubling sales in 2021. Sports memorabilia has emerged with immense potential for wealth management and investment firms. Ranking services are expected to grow by leaps and bounds in the future.”
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Decipher Market Insights says sports cards have been in particularly high demand as people spend more time at home, and an opportunity has arisen to dig into potential treasure troves of childhood memorabilia, including old comic books. and stacks of gum cards featuring sports stars.
“The lure of making money off of something that might be in your childhood basement has been irresistible,” said Stephen Fishler, founder of ComicConnect, who has watched the growing rise and profitability of collectibles traded at auction houses.
“In a nutshell, the world of modern sports cards has gone crazy,” Fishler said.