all News

Certified Collectibles Group to Acquire James Spence Authentication

Certified Collectibles Group (CCG), the leader in authenticating and grading collectibles, is excited to announce that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire James Spence Authentication (JSA), the leader in autograph authentication. The combination of CCG and JSA will provide collectors and dealers with a seamless solution to have autographed collectibles authenticated, graded and encapsulated by the world’s top experts.

CCG and JSA will provide a seamless solution for autograph collectors to have their items authenticated, graded and encapsulated by the world’s top experts.

CCG and JSA will provide a seamless solution for autograph collectors to have their items authenticated, graded and encapsulated by the world’s top experts.

The mission of CCG is to empower collectors with services that ignite passion, create value and build community. Since 1987, its iconic brands – NGC, PMG, CGC and ASG – have certified more than 90 million coins, banknotes, comic books, magazines, trading card games, sports cards, video games, home video, stamps and related collectibles. In 2021, CCG became a Blackstone portfolio company (NYSE: BX).

JSA was founded in 2005 by James Spence, Jr., a giant in the world of autograph and memorabilia collecting. In the last two decades, JSA has certified millions of autographs and in the process has built the world’s largest autograph database of nearly 1 million images encompassing virtually every known person — from Thomas Jefferson to Taylor Swift, Lou Gehrig to Little League stars. JSA uses this extraordinary database alongside deep expertise and state-of-the-art equipment to maintain unparalleled accuracy in autograph authentication. In addition, JSA’s experts frequent shows and interact closely with collectors, dealers and auction houses, further defining the JSA name as being synonymous with trust and accessibility.

James J. Spence, Jr. and James J. Spence III will remain at JSA’s helm after the transaction closes, and Mark Pepitone, a JSA co-owner and an industry expert in his own right, will serve as Senior Advisor to the company. The Spences, the JSA brand and their expert team will continue to provide the same world-class authentication services for autographs, with CCG enabling JSA to offer expanded services to collectors and dealers, such as grading and encapsulation, and to better serve collectors worldwide.

“CCG and JSA are the perfect match, with a shared passion for collectibles along with an unwavering commitment to expertise and integrity,” said Steven R. Eichenbaum, CEO of the Certified Collectibles Group. “I could not be more pleased with the addition of JSA and the Spences to the CCG family, and I think collectors will love the simplicity and scope of our combined services.”

The acquisition of JSA is CCG’s answer to the countless collectors and dealers who have asked to have their autographed collectibles authenticated and then graded and encapsulated. Although CCG pioneered witnessed authentication of autographs through its popular CGC Signature Series service, it has never offered full authentication and grading services for collectibles with unwitnessed autographs.

JSA has a particularly strong reputation in sports collectibles, a market that is an important focus for CCG. With JSA, CCG will significantly upgrade its services for collectors of sports, autographs and memorabilia through additional expertise, increased show attendance and other efforts.

In April, collectors of autographed comic books, magazines, sports cards, trading card games (TCGs) and non-sports cards will benefit from a seamless submission experience where they can use a single online form to submit their collectibles for JSA autograph authentication and CGC grading and encapsulation. More services and enhancements will be announced in the months ahead.

“This is the ideal next chapter in JSA’s history. CCG’s mission and vision are aligned with our own, and we are excited to see what the company’s extensive experience and resources can do for autograph authentication and collecting,” shared James J. Spence, Jr. and Mark Pepitone. “This combination is a true testament to the outstanding work of the entire JSA team, whose efforts have made JSA the world’s most trusted name in autograph authentication,” they added.

JSA and CCG will operate independently for another few weeks while the companies work behind-the-scenes to integrate. Instructions on how to submit autographed comics, magazines and cards will be posted soon.

Nothing more to miss!

subscribe our newsletter here