World Cup Sticker Collectors Scramble to Complete their Insanely Expensive Albums


Before Germany and Argentina face off in the World Cup final this Sunday, memorabilia collectors worldwide are racing to complete their Official World Cup sticker books. But it isn’t that simple; completing one of these albums is insanely expensive. One Scottish man reports having spend €1885 or £1500 to complete his book.

Panini has been the producer of official World Cup stickers since the 1970s. Their albums are sold in more than 100 countries and sticker swaps are a genuine craze. (An estimated 8 million albums are being filled in Brazil alone.) Each sticker book holds 640 stickers. I’m not a mathematician but at 60 cents per sticker, it is obvious that someone must spend a lot to complete one book. In comparison, Topps Official England produces their own sticker book. It may not be affiliated with FIFA, but it only costs between £66 and £84 to complete.

Topps England Ltd complained to the European Commission three years ago that FIFA wrongly favors of Panini. There are many complexities to this debate but right now it appears very much stalled. As one article explains:

"Football sticker collections require the manufacturer to buy the intellectual property rights of the tournament organisers logo, the tournament logo, national team logos and kits, and even image rights for individual players.

National associations are reluctant to license their rights to a company without FIFA rights, yet FIFA says that a company must have national association rights in order to be considered for their own."

Collecting sports memorabilia, especially when it is fun and geared towards kids, shouldn’t be expensive. Football is more popular than ever (even Americans are finally on board) and the demand for all World Cup memorabilia will only grow.

By the time the World Cup heads to Qatar in 2018, FIFA should loosen the reigns and allow other companies to produce official stickers. It allows for innovation, fair pricing, and friendly competition.

It is unclear if this matter will be settled by 2018. If so, Customized Stickers could certainly produce its own line of affordable World Cup stickers. Only time will tell!

Oh and one more thing: Go Germany!

Category: Custom Stickers

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