Speculation fails - what happens to those who... remain!
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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Robot Man said:

I can't think of anyone who got "rich" selling comic books.

Maybe the Fish at Metro. No, he was rich to begin with. Maybe richer.

Probably Chuckles at Mile High. Although he didn't get rich selling that collection, he got rich from the proceeds of it. That, and a lot of hard work and years of paying his dues.

Most people make lunch money or if we are lucky, enough to support our habit...

Not sure what qualifies as "rich", but I know a decent number of people who make six figures every year selling comics. Granted most are dealers, but it's more than lunch money. The amount of cash swimming around this hobby right now is insane. Staggering auction prices are now so pedestrian that 99% of them don't even get mentioned on the boards. Those dollars are going somewhere...

Edited by october

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If you are talking auction houses maybe yes. I'm sure Jim Halperin does REAL well on the comic auctions. 

I find it hard to imagine that many comic book dealers at shows, websites ect make 6 figure profits just selling comics. Are you talking gross or net? Dealers mostly buy from each other at very tight margins. You got to sell a TON of real high dollar books to make money like that. 

Not saying that there aren't dealers making 6 figure profits but it sure seems like not many. 

 

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15 hours ago, lou_fine said:

You wouldn't happen to be talking about Boston Corbett here, would you?  hm

Our now long gone economics professor who had paid over $12K for what was then the highest graded copy of NM 98 and then came onto the boards expounding and lecturing to all of us how this book could only go up in value over time.  lol  :tonofbricks:

I wasn’t referring to him, but a guy I know locally.  I’m not familiar with the professor you speak of.  Sounds like an entertaining thread.

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No shortage of speculation fails. Probably the biggest and most impactful one to our industry is the entire 90s era

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18 hours ago, Robot Man said:

I put Walking Dead back on the rack the day it came out because I thought it suked...

+1 

Add me to that list to, even after the manager at my LCS that had steered me right on other spec books said it would be a hit. I thought the B&W pages and weaker artwork would mean it was a non-starter. doh!

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13 hours ago, october said:

Not sure what qualifies as "rich", but I know a decent number of people who make six figures every year selling comics. Granted most are dealers, but it's more than lunch money. The amount of cash swimming around this hobby right now is insane. Staggering auction prices are now so pedestrian that 99% of them don't even get mentioned on the boards. Those dollars are going somewhere...

Agreed. All you need are a couple of big collections per year and you can make a nice living off of a comic hobby/habit. 

As far as modern speculation goes, I was talking with the owner (he was late 20s/early 30s old) of a LCS in a large rural Alberta community at the 2015 Calgary Expo. He was walking around the show floor selling ESOV 2 regular covers at $20 apiece to other vendors, and the 1:25 variants for $60. We bought what he had left, and I asked him why he was giving us such a great deal. The reason - he had speculated on 1,000 copies (+ the variants) since he thought that a Gwen Spider-Man/Woman was a no brainer and was willing to share the wealth with other vendors. He had already made his money selling them at $40-60 for regular covers and $100 - $150 for the variants as they ran up.

Then we started talking about his approach to modern speculating, and his back story was great. He was originally from the Maritimes and had moved to Alberta to work in the oilpatch. He collected comics, and started speculating on new #1s and 1st apps due to his love for the hobby and high level of disposable income. His early spec plays became huge wins (think back to New 52 #1s and the 2012/13 Image speculation bubble), allowing him to set up a comic store here in Alberta to move stock, and to purchase a couple of houses (rentals that he would retire to) and commercial properties back home from his comic spec profits.  I have not seen him at shows since the downturn in the oilpatch, so I don't know whether he is still here or not, but he said at the time he was close to hitting his retirement $$$ target from comic profits so it likely worked out for him. 

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Posted (edited)
15 hours ago, Robot Man said:

If you are talking auction houses maybe yes. I'm sure Jim Halperin does REAL well on the comic auctions. 

I find it hard to imagine that many comic book dealers at shows, websites ect make 6 figure profits just selling comics. Are you talking gross or net? Dealers mostly buy from each other at very tight margins. You got to sell a TON of real high dollar books to make money like that. 

Not saying that there aren't dealers making 6 figure profits but it sure seems like not many. 

 

Net. There are far more than you realize.

I mean, there are individual threads on the boards where the gross is six figures.

Edited by october

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6 hours ago, october said:

Net. There are far more than you realize.

I mean, there are individual threads on the boards where the gross is six figures.

So what do you think someone like Bob S pulls in a year?  $500k to $1million?  

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5 minutes ago, batman_fan said:

So what do you think someone like Bob S pulls in a year?  $500k to $1million?  

I have no idea. You should ask him....if you dare. 

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Posted (edited)
2 minutes ago, october said:

I have no idea. You should ask him....if you dare. 

Observe how I said "someone like"and not Bob directly.  driven by pure fear

 

Edited by batman_fan

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13 hours ago, batman_fan said:

So what do you think someone like Bob S pulls in a year?  $500k to $1million?  

Is that what he's doing with my X-Men 94-143 budget?

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IMHO, Bob S has a business model that is better than a lot of other dealers - in addition to his great rep, allowing collectors to consign books on his site in addition to selling his own stock is smart. That 7.5-10% consignment fee will add up over a year, and it enables him to have additional high end books listed that draw eyes to his site without having to tie up his capital in them. 

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