Over the past few months, we’ve noticed a significant increase in higher-priced transactions occurring in the Funko universe. While part of this is due to the fact that we are now recording private transactions in the guide, we’ve also seen prices of the rarest Pop!s increase by a factor of 4 within the last year.
After investigating (and many, many discussions in the Squad Facebook Group and with others in the wider Funkosphere), we believe that there is also something new. With an influx of new collectors in the space, we’ve noticed new buyers appearing on the scene who are willing to make purchases at a multiple of the current PPG Estimated Values. This has led to lots of confusion and we thought it would be good to explain what our role is when it comes to this current trend.
Over the last few years, we experienced similar sea level changes in other collectible segments such as sneakers, video games, and trading cards (and in NFTs, but we’re going to leave that one for now 😉). For Hot Wheels, we saw price influxes for Datsun and Gasser models, while increases for video games and trading cards were up to 80x during their peaks.
New Price Records every month
And it has happened before. From Tulips to Beanie Babies (here is an article on that).
Longaberger Baskets, Franklin Mint Plates, and David Winter Cottages
all skyrocketed in value in their days
Longaberger sold more than $1 billion in baskets in 2000 and created this headquarters!
A lavish (or wacky) Head Office tells a lot of the story!
Our money is on this theory – as some of those segments that were on a high have started to see prices trending down, collectors (and new folks that are better described as investors than collectors) are trying to put their money into new segments and these guys often have an understanding and appreciation of grading.
Funko grading really only started with PSA joining the market a few months back and we estimate that less than 3,000 graded have been graded so far. The idea here is to buy the very best ungraded POPs, and have them graded, which then ultimately experience big value increases (see our post about Ms. Marvel where the first Graded 10 copy commanded a 15x increase over the ungraded Estimated Value).
So we’ve been asked a lot, where does PPG come in?
PPG’s role is one of a reporter, i.e. figuring out if the transaction actually happened. The Squad and our team are working super hard on that.
Once we can confirm the authenticity of a transaction, our role is not to make value judgments or question the buyer’s motives.
For those of you who are new to PPG, or who would like a quick refresher about how the price guide works and what kinds of price sources we include, we encourage you to read this quick article Types of Price Points and Price Sources.
What is the outlook for this segment then? There are two possibilities here.
- This is a fluke and Estimated Values will come down again. There are only 5 to 10 buyers that believe prices will continue to go up. OR
- This is the new normal and prices will remain at a much higher level with many more new and old buyers thinking this is here to stay.
We think we will find out when 10,000 more Pop!s have been graded and offered for sale. In the meantime we will be doing our job, adding every qualifying Price Point (read all about that here) and showing you all the data that we have to help you make your own conclusions.
5 thoughts on “Big Funko Price Increases – a Fad or the New Reality? And What is PPG’s Role?”
I wonder if the company grading the pop also makes a difference in the value. Who do you see or think carries the highest value?
I suspect we will now in a year when the dust has settled and we have more data.
when you see a pop that has traded consistently at, say, $1500, suddenly have one sale at $8000, I feel it is a manipulation by someone who owns a lot of these they wish to sell. Now everyone is asking $3000 at a “bargain” price. It makes me lose confidence in the Pop market altogether. Add in all the fakes, and I have decided to get out entirely. Sad, because I was very enthused when I started.
Our company has sold pops for 4 years now and we’ve always priced our pops by averaging together up to 20 available pops for sale at the moment we price them (and then update again in 6 months). Until recently, our average prices were ALWAYS higher than PPG because we used more sources than HobbyDB and ebay, which for a long time were the only price point references recorded here. Our prices came from a larger variety of available sources (Google, Mercari, Walmart etc.). Recently though, since HobbyDB has started to include more price references, we’ve noticed our average prices are closer to and matching PPG more and more. So while PPG may be seeing higher prices and claim it’s a fad, it’s entirely possible that PPG is just finally catching up with the market now that it’s using more data points.
Good to hear we agree on Values! Re fad, we did not say that. We just do not know and are here to report.