eBay has announced plans to purchase the popular trading card marketplace TCGPlayer for $295 million. The purchase continues eBay's push into trading cards, as collectible cards are currently one of the auction site's most sold products. TCGPlayer will continue to operate autonomously after the acquisition is complete, and plans to add features such as "strategic omnichannel capabilities like order fulfillment and cart optimization" to TCGPlayer's already robust set of ecommerce tools. The sale is expected to be completed in early 2023.
"eBay continues to build on our 26 years of experience in trading cards, powering local hobby stores and Main Street retailers to deliver an online destination that collectors love," said Dawn Block, the vice president of Collectibles at eBay, in a press release announcing the purchase. "eBay has always fueled our customers' passion in this space and facilitated connections between buyers and sellers, and with TCGplayer, we can enhance the customer experience across categories, forge even more relationships, and cater to enthusiasts around the world."
TCGPlayer was founded in 2008 and specializes in selling trading cards tied to games such as Magic: The Gathering and the Pokemon Trading Card Game. The card site is a marketplace in which users can buy and sell cards from other users. Individual card pages show average prices, trends, and a list of latest sales, providing potential buyers with a ton of information so they don't get ripped off. One notable difference between eBay and TCGPlayer's user base is that while eBay primarily catered to collectors with its services, TCGPlayer also robustly serves players looking to build current competitive decks in various trading card games.
eBay has been growing its trading card game business, in part because collectible cards have become immensely popular during the pandemic. The company noted that over $2 billion in trading card transactions were made on eBay in the first half of 2021, which exceeded the amount of sales made on the platform during all of 2020. eBay also released an Authenticity Guarantee system earlier this year that ensured that all cards sold for more than $750 were authentic, along with a physical eBay Vault service for buyers and sellers to send their graded cards to for additional security.
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