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Collectors Universe Signs With EBay to Authenticate NFL Auction Goods

November 16, 2000|Robin Fields

Collectors Universe Inc., a Newport Beach company that authenticates and grades rare coins, sports memorabilia and other rare objects, said Wednesday it has won a contract to authenticate autographed merchandise sold on EBay Inc.'s National Football League auction site.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. It is the company's first contract with a national sports league, said Dave Gioia, vice president of marketing.

Counterfeit sports collectibles often sneak into online auctions. A division of Collectors Universe owns proprietary technology designed to weed out fakes and make bona fide items traceable.

The company's experts will triple-check the athletes' autographs on balls, clothing, trading cards and other items sold through the NFL's partnership with EBay. Then the company will put tamper-proof proprietary tags on them, using an invisible liquid.

Collectors Universe, which went public a year ago, handles authentication chores for the largest trading card company in Japan.

Its shares rose 19 cents Wednesday to close at $1.94 each.

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