If there's anything certain in the new Information Age era, it's change, and Krause Publications, which has produced Sports Collectors Digest for nearly three decades, finds itself in the middle of yet another major expansion of its hobby reach.
Noting the sports division's considerable experience in the auction world, Krause Publications has launched Collect.com Auctions, which expects to play a complementary role in the long-standing Krause Publications commitment to provide a broad array of services for hobbyists and collectors at every level of expertise.
Collect.com Auctions, powered by Krause Publications, is currently taking consignments for its inaugural sale, slated to be held June 18.
"We have the in-house experience, expertise and infrastructure to put this in place," said Dean Listle, publisher of Sports for Krause Publications, a division of F+W Media.
Added Collect.com's director of auctions, Steve Bloedow, "We have experts in-house in every area of collectibles, from sports, comics, music, automobiles and antiques to guns and knives. With the current climate in the auction business, we felt there was still room in the industry for auction houses."
The auction house plans to use its company history and assets to reach the most bidders possible. Marketing power includes the ability to reach 10 unique collectibles markets through 15 print titles and 13 collectibles-related websites, getting in touch with more than 92,000 collectors every day.
Bob Lemke, former editor of the Standard Catalog of Baseball Cards, will serve as the consignment director for the new venture.
"It makes sense to have a foremost vintage card expert on board with us, and Bob certainly fills that role, as readers of SCD will attest," Bloedow said.
The first auctions will have a "working man's" feel, offering affordable items in the sports categories of vintage cards, modern cards, autographs, game-used equipment, tickets, publications, trophies, awards, vintage photos, advertising pieces, political memorabilia and other miscellaneous items.
"The focus will be on sports, but not limited to sports," Bloedow said.
All of the autographs sold through Collect.com Auctions will come with authentication from James Spence Authentication, PSA/DNA, Upper Deck Authenticated, ACE or Steiner.
"As a company, we've been involved in the auction business since its start, covering, running and helping other auction houses launch," Bloedow said, who has been in the hobby for 30 years, including the last 14 with Krause. "We're now taking that experience and expertise in starting our own business."
Collect.com Auctions looks to join an already established group of auction houses, creating its own niche in the group.
"I view many of the existing auction houses as potential partners more than competitors," Bloedow said.
Collect.com Auctions will work with a 17 percent buyer's premium, with all forms of payment accepted, including credit cards, PayPal and Google Checkout.
The consignment deadline for the debut sale is April 24, with the first auction ending June 18. Print catalogs will be available first week of June. For more information, call (888) 463-3063 or visit www.collect.com/auctions.