Card #15,000,000 & The Modern Baseball Card Investor

TheModernBaseballCardInvestorAbout a week ago I got an email from Jeff Hwang, author of The Modern Baseball Card Investor.  I first met him at the Industry Summit in Las Vegas a little more than a year ago, and we had a really good conversation about the baseball card market.  His book is now done, and he wanted to send me a copy of it. I just got my copy in the mail the other day, and was pleasantly surprised with how well he described COMC.com in his Enhanced Liquidity section of the Introduction (pg 30-31).  eBay got a paragraph and we got nearly a full page.
JeffHwangAuto
Jeff did a great job of summarizing the difference between COMC.com and other sites.  It captures the essence of what has made us successful.

Here is an excerpt…

The online consignment site COMC.com has further enhanced the liquidity of lower priced cards by creating a centralized online exchange where all the cards listed online are in one physical location, and can be traded multiple times without being shipped.  Launched in 2007 as CheckOutMyCards.com, COMC.com allows users to submit cards to the company’s website in Seattle, where the cards are scanned front and back and listed online for a small fee, as little as 25 cents per card.

In contrast to eBay, where a seller typically incurs both eBay and PayPal fees for every transaction made, a seller on COMC instead receives store credit for the full amount of the sale, and pays a further cash-out fee only upon cash out – similar to the way a stock investor only pays a capital gains tax upon selling a stock, and not while holding.  Meanwhile, a buyer only pays shipping if/when he wants to have the physical item shipped; he can turn around and relist the item without incurring a shipping cost (the card is already located in COMC’s warehouse), or can otherwise save on shipping costs by waiting until he has acquired multiple cards.

As such, users can flip cards for profit on COMC.com without ever physically being in possession of an actual card, the same way a stock investor can trade stocks online without ever physically being in possession of a stock certificate.  But more importantly, the site dramatically improves the liquidity of low-priced cards by lowering the otherwise prohibitive transaction costs associated with them – most notably shipping costs, as well as the time it takes to list and sell and then ship such cards.

At the sports card and gaming collectibles Industry Summit in Las Vegas in March 2013, the company announced that it had listed it 10 millionth card, and had to that point shipped 3.6 million cards to 75 countries.

2000 Upper Deck MVP Pro Sign #IB - Isaac Bruce - Courtesy of COMC.com
Card #15,000,000
I thought it was fitting to announce that just today (writing this on Friday July 11th, 2014) we identified item #15,000,000 as 2000 Upper Deck MVP Pro Sign #IB – Isaac Bruce, deposited it in Fiber1’s account, Fiber1 put it up for sale, and I purchased it.

Not only have 50% more items been consigned with us since March 2013, we have also shipped 50% more items to buyers.  That is more than 5 million items shipped all over the world.

Thank you COMC Nation for making this possible!
 

 

 

COMC in the Press!

Ryan Cracknell of Non-Sport Update recently interviewed us for NSU’s blog.  In this month’s print edition of Non-Sport Update he has also written up a review of his experience with COMC!  Some excerpts from his article:

COMC is great for old-school set builders like me. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good autograph, but I’m usually looking for a couple of generic singles to fill out a nine-pocket page or plug some holes. I spent much of last  summer doing just that with my original Star Wars sets I always wanted to complete. Now I’m a couple of cards away, down from a couple hundred. I’m chugging along on lots of other sets as well, both new and old.

While individual cards may be cheap on other sites where many sellers can list their items, shipping costs can be a deal breaker. Having to order from several different locations means you have to pay postage several times over. I’d much rather put that money towards filling more holes in my collection. Because COMC stores all of their cards in one place, you’re only paying one fee. From a percentage basis, the postage savings of buying in bulk from COMC versus [other site] can add up quickly.

For me, COMC is kind of like using Amazon for movies and books. They’ve got a massive selection, fair prices and tons of convenience, particularly for collectors like me who are looking for cheap singles. Of course, nothing beats a good local shop or card show, but COMC is a formidable alternative.

Thanks, Ryan, for taking the time to check us out! Non-Sport Update’s Feb/Mar issue is on sale now online and in select Barnes & Noble and Books-A-Million stores as well as comic and card shops.

+5 on the Seattle Startup Index

This month we jumped up 5 spots on the Seattle Startup Index that is published by the Seattle 2.0 Blog.

  • We debuted in the January 2008 index at #74.
  • In the February index we jumped 8 spots to #66.
  • Now, for the March index we jumped 5 spots to #61.

I noticed that no site that was ranked below us jumped above us. That is cool. We are growing faster than our nearest peers.

Thank you for visiting our site and helping us to become the fastest growing sports card website on the internet!

Our images featured on Forbes.com

Last night I got a request from Jane at Forbes.com for some high-resolution images of a handful of players.

With our large arsenal of high-resolution scans, it was fairly easy to pull together the request. Late last night I sent the images, and this afternoon the article was posted.

The Biggest Draft Flops Of The Past 25 Years

Here are the images from COMC.com.

Brien Taylor
1992 Topps #6 - Brien Taylor RC (Rookie Card) - Courtesy of CheckOutMyCards.com

B. J. Wallace
1992 Bowman #554 - B.J.Wallace FOIL RC (Rookie Card) - Courtesy of CheckOutMyCards.com

Brian Lawton
1992-93 Bowman #254 - Brian Lawton - Courtesy of CheckOutMyCards.com

Neil Brady
1992-93 Parkhurst #124 - Neil Brady - Courtesy of CheckOutMyCards.com

Great post on the Microsoft Access team blog

Here is a great post on a handy trick I told some buddies at Microsoft.
http://blogs.msdn.com/access/archive/2008/01/14/easy-drill-through-with-macros.aspx

Here is a screen shot of one of the many places we use this technique in the inventory tracking system we use for managing the data behind CheckOutMyCards.com.
Hyperlink Example

As a front-end development tool, Microsoft Access provides an incredible balance of power and rapid development that allows us to move quickly with changing demands. Microsoft SQL Server 2005 is currently our back-end database for both our in house inventory management system and our ASP.net web site.

Picked up by KillerStartup.com

I just got a notification that our site has been reviewed on KillerStartup.com. I don’t know who wrote up the review, but they did a great job.

Here is their take on why we might be a killer startup.

The site gives card collectors and sellers a great opportunity to facilitate the buying, selling, and looking process. There are tons of rare cards, so it’s a great first place to search for that card you’ve been dying to get your hands on for years. It’s a great alternative to looking for cards on ebay and has the potential to become a favorite site for sports enthusiasts.

Here is their overview of the site.

CheckOutMyCards is a way to buy and sell sports cards. Offering baseball, basketball, football, golf, hockey, racing, and even poker cards, it’s a one stop shop for sports card enthusiasts. With those who have an extensive collection of cards and want to make some money, they have the ability to purchase store credit, send them to CheckOutMyCards, letting them do all the research to find their true worth. The seller then sets prices for the cards and they are in turn displayed on the website for purchase. For avid collectors, there are thousands of cards available and you can search for them based on player, set, card, and year. You can filter your search according to age, book value, etc. Cards are scanned in high quality resolution, both front and back, so you know exactly what the card looks like and what condition it’s in before you buy it.

Here is the full post.
http://www.killerstartup.com/eCommerce/Checkoutmycardscom—Buy-and-Sell-Sports-Cards/

I guess you can go to the site and flag us as a killer startup. This is the first I have heard of this site, but I am pretty impressed so far.