Blackstone to acquire a group of certified collectibles
Blackstone, an investment firm whose story has been told by the United Nations as their tactics of buying single-family homes as an investment opportunity during the financial crisis of 2007-2008 contributed to “devastating consequences” for people, purchased a controlling stake in the Certified Collectibles group, home to CGC comic book reviewers and more. Founded in 1987, the Certified Collectibles group provides authentication, filing and custody services for a wide variety of collectibles ranging from comics and collectible cards to stamps, coins, silver and sports memorabilia. Prices have skyrocketed over the past year for authentically categorized collectibles like an unopened box of Pokemon TCG cards that sold for over $ 400,000 and a copy of Action Comics # 1 that recently sold out. for $ 3.25 million.
“When I created CCG, I had a vision that we would transform collectibles into an asset class that collectors, dealers and investors around the world trust,” said Mark Salzberg, Founder from CCG, in a press release. “It has been amazing to be a part of this journey as we have met and surpassed these goals. I am delighted to join Blackstone as we enter the next phase of growth for CCG and the collectibles market.”
A press release on the acquisition notes that “Blackstone will seek to accelerate the growth of CCG, by enabling the company to make significant investments in its current and planned services, by adding and training new employees, by expanding its geographic and product reach, acquiring new technologies and expanding its presence. “
The same press release claims that Blackstone has $ 650 billion in assets under management which, according to their website, is split between investments such as life sciences, insurance companies, real estate and more.
While claiming to have “a positive impact on the businesses it acquires and the communities they serve,” Blackstone has also been linked to the “slum lord-like behavior” of its tenants with a Reuters in 2018, noting a tactic of excessive tenant fees and poor conditions at properties across the United States. Just nine days ago, news from Bloomberg that Blackstone had invested an additional $ 6 billion in real estate, buying Home Partners of America Inc. and with it over 17,000 additional homes.
“Shamelessly, some of the same Wall Street companies that nurtured the dream of homeownership for millions of American families are now the largest landlords in the country – profiting from the destruction they have caused,” previously wrote Senator Elizabeth Warren in an article on Way. “In the aftermath of the 2008 crisis, private equity firms like Blackstone embarked on a wave of buying, seizing apartment complexes and single-family homes that had been foreclosed.”
Real estate is not the only investment arm that Blackstone has invested money in and has in turn been criticized for how it has affected the general public.
A report of The Washington Post in March of this year, revealed that a Blackstone-backed company, Apria, specializing in medical equipment, “had engaged in two feats of financial engineering.” Among those exploits was a case of “false medical claims for the rental of ventilators worth millions of dollars to the government” while cutting jobs for respiratory specialists. Apria, owned by Blackstone, settled the federal lawsuit for $ 40.5 million.
More, Interception reported in 2019 that two Blackstone-backed companies “took over the land” and “deforested it” in the Amazon rainforest. Senator Warren also criticized the company for boosting “short-term profits at the expense of our global climate and indigenous communities.” (H / T Politics)
In other words, the acquisition of the CCG may not lead to federal government prosecutions or statements by political figures but a long-standing trusted institute in the collectors’ world is now linked to a parent company that meets regularly in the press for less than desirable reasons.