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eBay is acquiring TCGplayer, one of the largest trading card marketplaces

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eBay and TCGplayer logos. | Image: eBay

eBay will acquire TCGplayer, an online marketplace for trading cards, the companies announced today. The deal, worth up to $295 million, marks eBay’s latest push into the growing trading card market, which experienced a huge boom during the pandemic.

TCGplayer is a popular buying and selling platform for trading card games like Pokémon, Yu-Gi-Oh!, and Magic: The Gathering. The company also provides seller tools and services, including storage and order fulfillment. In announcing the purchase, eBay described trading card games as an “attractive category” with “substantial growth.”

“This new chapter allows us to continue operating independently within eBay, while also benefiting from their decades of industry experience and resources to deepen the connection between hobbyists and their communities,” Chedy Hampson, founder and CEO of TCGplayer, says in the press release.

eBay has rolled out a number of programs focused on collectible trading cards in recent months leading up to its purchase of TCGplayer. In May, the platform expanded its Authenticity Guarantee to include graded cards worth over $2,000 and said it would partner with Professional Sports Authenticator, a third-party company that inspects and grades cards. In June, the company launched eBay Vault, a sprawling 31,000-square-foot, temperature-controlled facility where buyers and sellers can store their graded trading cards.

Though trading cards have long had an enthusiastic community that buys, trades, and resells cards, the pandemic put it into overdrive, overwhelming retailers and grading companies alike. The boom has died down somewhat, but eBay’s acquisition of a major competitor suggests the company believes there’s plenty of money yet to be made.

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