Panini, NBA Extend Exclusive Basketball Card and Sticker License


NBA Panini Logo

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

The NBA license isn’t going anywhere. Panini and the league have announced an extension to their exclusive.

The deal, which was first announced on Sports Business Journal, covers multiple years. It means Panini is the only company that can produce licensed NBA cards and stickers not just in the United States but around the world.

“It’s been apparent for several years that the NBA is bullish on Panini’s global approach to the collectible business,” said Kevin Isaacson, Beckett Media vice president. “Given its long-term exclusives in basketball and football, as well as its MLBPA relationship, Panini America is firmly established as the trading card market leader for years to come.”

Panini first gained an exclusive for the NBA license in 2009-10. It was their first exclusive since acquiring Donruss/Playoff. Prior to Panini, Upper Deck and Topps held the license. That initial Panini deal was later extended in 2012.

Since that time, Panini has added exclusive deals with the NFL, NASCAR, USA Baseball and virtually every major college and university in the United States. They also hold a deal with the Major League Baseball Players Association. The company’s extensive soccer licenses, including FIFA, date back many years.

Comments? Questions? Contact Ryan Cracknell on Twitter @tradercracks.


Ryan Cracknell

A collector for much of his life, Ryan focuses primarily on building sets, Montreal Expos and interesting cards. He's also got one of the most comprehensive collections of John Jaha cards in existence (not that there are a lot of them). Got a question, story idea or want to get in touch? You can reach him by email and through Twitter @tradercracks.

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  1. Bill 1 June, 2017 at 19:08

    How many more years does the deal cover? I’ll make sure to continue not buying new basketball cards during that time.

  2. Gary 2 June, 2017 at 20:18

    I’m with you, Bill. Overpriced, and no imagination, plus saturating the card market with the same stuff,

  3. Adam 3 June, 2017 at 01:42

    Exclusive licenses are killing the whole card industry. How do the card companies STILL not realize that they are leading to their own downfall? No competition leads to weak designs and over-priced garbage that no one will buy. Now I wish for the hobby to get back to what is was in the mid and late 1990’s when there were too many companies. The cards were excellent then and that’s why there is such a resurgence of cards from that era!

  4. Robert S. 3 June, 2017 at 18:57

    The number of years isn’t specified in a *gasp!* Panini Press Release other than “multi-year” so at least 2 years.

  5. John Bateman 5 June, 2017 at 13:09

    Its funny, beckett has a later post about Lebron James rookie cards, there are only 62 of them. Not 62 total but 62 different. I only recognize Topps, Topps Chrome and Bowman Chrome. The rest I don’t know. I think Upper Deck was just creating sets so that there would be more of James (rookie cards – SP SPX, EZ-XP etc..). This in not what is needed. What we need is fewer sets with more recognizable qualities. Exclusive are not bad as long as something that is created is recognizable and understandable.

    You need to build from your base. If Panini only made 4 or 5 sets and built a stronger base. The Hobby would be better for all sports. Companies should promote is lower end brands and try to get more people involved in the hobby. Once you get more people in the door they will probably start buying other stuff (higher end). Thus making the cards the collectors are holding worth more. It gives collectors more valve and they will start collecting more. The cycle will then continue.

  6. john benepe 12 June, 2017 at 16:34

    exclusive deals through panini mean no imagination and no love for the collector, Without topps to make basic sets that people enjoy there will be no Card Hobby, another line of cards I will not be purchasing in the future now, (basketball and football, gives me more to buy Topps baseball with……)

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