Saturday, March 7, 2009

New Feature: Product Value Review

I once saw this concept on a message board and thought that it would be a great “feature” for the content of SportsCardsUncensored. Have you ever wondered exactly what the return value of a purchase of cards is? Have you ever really wanted to see a breakdown of Beckett’s Inflated Value vs. Ebay Real Value of a random case of cards? Have you ever wanted to see if a certain product was worth a large investment of your own money? If you answered yes to any of these questions then you should love this new feature.

The new feature is heavily dependant on the “collective” readership of SCU. Here is what happens. We sell 50 “shares” in a case (think of it as an investment) in order to purchase the case. Then we break the case on video (just like we do for our group breaks posted on here and on YouTube). After the break, I will list all of the cards from the break on Ebay and sell them (7 day auctions with no reserve…have to push the free market idea). After all of the sales have been finalized (delivered to customer via tracking, etc.) we will then do a breakdown in 2 ways.

First, we will do a breakdown of sale value vs. purchase value. In other words how much of your original investment could you expect to get back if you were to sell all of the cards (assuming that the case is an indication of an “average” case).

Second, we will do a breakdown of “Beckett” book value vs. Ebay sale value. What percentage of the Beckett value can you expect to actually get out of your cards? Hopefully this will give some concrete evidence of how disconnected “book” can be for collectors.

Finally, the best part about the feature. After taking all of the expenses (case cost, paypal fees, ebay fees, shipping fees) and subtracting them from the income (share income, sale income) the money left over will then be refunded to each “share” holder. Of course if the sale values are very good (think a huge hit, etc.) then there is a chance each share holder could make a profit. However, odds are that we could expect to make roughly 50% of our money back at a minimum (hopefully). I will be keeping a spreadsheet of all income/expenses that would be emailed out to each “share” holder in the interest of transparency.

For example say we have $32 per share. That is a total income of $1533 (1600-1.34 per share Paypal Fees). We buy a case of Exquisite from Blowout or some other dealer at $1475. We then sell the cards on Ebay and get $1000 profit (sales – fees and shipping cost). So 1533-1475 = 58 + 1000 = $1058/50 = $21.16 per share refunded to shareholders.

Obviously this is not a money making adventure for participants, but rather it is a chance for the readership of SCU to come together to hopefully see some sweet cards pulled and to help educate the wider collecting world of the value of certain products (while of course continuing to debunk the “Gospel of Beckett Values”).

Up first will be a case of 2008 Upper Deck Exquisite. Look for the official “shareholder” sign-up tomorrow at some time. It will be a lot of work for me, but I think well worth it to continue educating the collecting world. Plus at worst I figure we maybe lose $15 per share on a product like Exquisite so it is a great starter.

Let me know what you all think.

P.S. If anyone wanted to design a sweet banner for this feature it would be greatly appreciated (I am not artistically gifted and so it would just look horrible if I did it).


  1. i think we all pay a certain amount just for the rush of opening the pack in hopes of a huge hit thats where some of the money goes not many boxes are going to return your money i dont think we need a experiment to prove that

  2. i think the idea behind this is awesome... i'd love to see the results from your experiment. i'm just not in the position to drop cash and join. good luck with this.

  3. Long time reader, first time, etc...

    I think this is a great idea. I'd be really curious to see if those that invested in a case would bid the cards up (more so than usual) on eBay. Kind of an "insider trading", trying to get a greater ROI.

    It's the American way, right?

  4. Wannatrade- I agree with you. However, I still think there is a rather large collection of people who do not think like you and I. I think having concrete examples broken down will help open at least some eyes. Plus this wouldn't be a regular team, but rather a once a quarter thing or something like that.

    EA- Yeah I thought the same thing. Although with someone owning an individual share the ROI would only be a 2% savings on the auction. However, if someone bought say 10 shares and then we pulled a Matt Ryan and they felt they wanted that card essentially they could save 20% on the Matt Ryan Card in terms of money they would get back.

    I am interested in some other variables too. Like perhaps "Beckett" disciples would bid the auctions up just to mess with the results and try and show that Beckett is relevant, etc. It could be messed with in many ways, but I think overall it would be a fun collective endeavor to see what kind of actual value comes from cards.

  5. Any relevant data for the numb nuts who still sell and trade on Becket "Book" is valuable. It would be interesting to do this on several products for several years to find a mean and average on several different levels. It could lead to an oft pointed-to study.

  6. This is a good idea and as a long time reader of this blog I agree this should be done but not with somehthing
    so obnoxiously bad and low in resale value except when u hit it big

    anyway this case is like a bad heged fund I would say as a former hedge funder my self that you buy 1 box of exquisite and some mid end stuff like SPA or Heroes BB/FB where they have pretty equal return in a 3-5 boxes and hope that the exqusite hits big if not the hereos/SPA will hopefully make up for it but if they dont then ur screwed and that is how all the hedge funds went down lol

  7. user3007-

    A hedge fund concept would be better if we were looking to make a profit off the endeavor. However, this is more about putting actual "quantifiable" numbers on the value of a product taking a random case sample.

    This feature will be limited to high end and the more valuable mid-range products. From this time forward it will be done with pre-orders of products. I would estimate if this is enjoyed by the readership we may expand into Baseball products, but I expect it to mostly be limited to football.

    Examples of possible future products:

    Case of Absolute Memorabilia
    Case of Playoff National Treasures
    Case of SP Authentic
    Case of UD Premier
    Case of UD Ultimate
    Case of Leaf Limited

    That is an example of the types of products which are focused more upon the "hits" than the building of sets.

  8. This is a very interesting idea, but at the same time, it's a very bad investment. It's very unlikely that the participants are going to make a profit, so I'd be surprised if you're able to find 50 share-holders.