First ever Trading Card Games auction for Heritage brings in $3.4m as Pokemon tops the bill

A sealed Pokemon Booster Box stole the spotlight at Heritage Auctions’ first Trading Card Games event this month, when the First Edition Base Set drew 115 bids before selling for an impressive $384,000.

The first of its kind event exceeded all pre-auction expectations when it went on to take a total of $3,473,102 across its July 24th and 25th dates, with perfect sell through rates of 100 per cent both by value and by lots sold.

The trading card game auction caught the attention of collectors from around the world, drawing some 1,445 bidders from around the globe. 

“We are thrilled with the results of this auction,” said Heritage Auctions’ Trading Card Game consignment director, Jesus Garcia. “The popularity and demand for these items dictated a standalone auction, and it more than lived up to the hype.

“There was more bidding in this auction that in any other, and we welcomed a lot of new bidders at this event.”

The result for the top lot, the Pokemon Booster Box, goes on the record as the second highest price ever for a Pokemon lot, trailing only the Pokemon First Edition Base Set Sealed Booster Box (Wizards of the Coast, 1999) that Heritage sold in January this year for $408,000.

The item market the 12th time that a Pokemon lot has reached six figures in a Heritage auction, and the sixth Pokemon lot to bring $300,000 or more.

Released on January 9th, 1999 by Wizards of the Coast, the Base Set included 102 cards, including the popular Charizard.

Meanwhile, it was a Pokemon Charizard card – a number four First Edition Base Set Trading Card – that drew 65 bids before finishing at $264,000, while one of the most extraordinary lots in the auction was a Pokemon Blastoise that sold for $216,000.

A Test Print ‘Gold Border’ Edition, this Blastoise card was one of the first attempts by Wizards of the Coast to bring the Pokemon Trading Card Game to the English market. Making this card unique is the fact that it features a Magic: The Gathering back, and artwork by Ken Sugimori that was used for the cover of Pokemon Blue.

“This card is an absolute rarity,” said Garcia. “There are just three other cards like it that have been certified, making this an exceptional centrepiece to any collection.”

The auction saw the competitive bidding continue for a Magic: The Gathering Unlimited Starter Deck Sealed Box which dubled its pre-auction estimate at $150,000.

About Robert Hutchins

Robert Hutchins is the editor of ToyNews and its sister title, Licensing.biz. He has worked his way from Staff Writer to Editor across the two titles, having spent almost eight years with both and what now seems like a lifetime surrounded by toys. You can contact him by emailing robert.hutchins@biz-media.co.uk or calling him on 0203 143 8780 You can even follow him on Twitter @RobGHutchins if ranting is your thing...

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