Back in May, Disney graced us with another vinyl for the collecting masses: Pop! Vinyls. They are produced by the company, Funko, in conjunction with Disney, of course. Funko is based in Lynnwood, Washington, and are most well-known for manufacturing and producing a wide range of pop-culture licensed toys. They are most well known for their bobble-heads that have sold more than 10 million units world-wide. They have major licensing deals with Lucas Film, Marvel, Hasbro, Elvis Presley, CBS, FOX, Warner Bros and Microsoft. Now that the Disney Pop Vinyls Series 1 have been in stores for almost 4 months and a few characters are starting to get somewhat scarce, the big question is whether Pop! Vinyls are the next big Disney Collectible.
Will a Stitch Pop! Vinyl be worth $600 in 3 years like the Balloon Chaser?
To answer this question, let’s take a look at the similarities between vinylmations and Pop! Vinyls.
- Price—Pop! Vinyls are sold for $12.50 each. This is very similar in price to vinylmations, which typically range in price from $9.95 to $12.95. They are just barely in the price range for a Disney Store impulse buy for most people.
- Size—Most Pop! Vinyls are 3-4″ in height.
- Creativity–While Vinylmations are limitless in their subject matter, they are limited by their shape. Pop! Vinyls are strictly character-driven at this point, but the shape itself varies.
- Limited Release and Limited Edition–The bulk of Pop! Vinyls are released as 3-4″ figures in Disney stores. The understanding is that once a series is gone, it will be gone for good (I have not seen this writing, however, but it appears a safe assumption). A few are released in limited known quantities at special events (San Diego Comic Con and D23, so far) like the 9″ vinyls. It appears that Pop! Vinyls will be released every few months, which is a similar interval.
- Window Box–You always know what Pop! Vinyl you will get. Common consumers will like this, while vinylmation junkies may find it a turn-off after a while due to the lack of excitement.
- No chaser–The chaser is what hooked our family. You rip open a box in hopes of hitting the jackpot. People buy more and more and more in hopes of getting that green apple chaser. This also drives the secondary market as people sell/trade their duplicates. This does not exist for Pop! Vinyls.
- Availability–Pop! Vinyls are pretty available, while many Vinylmation series are only available in the parks. This can be an advantage in reaching new fans, but it also makes them feel less special.
- Lack of diversity in what’s being represented with Pop! (all character based). This could change with time.
- No natural incentive to collect them all. With Vinylmations, a chaser is present in every case which encourages people to buy in bulk to not only get the chaser, but the entire series.
- Lack of initial scarcity. The fact that Pop! Vinyls have been present at so many Disney Stores, one would wager a good guess that MANY, MANY, MANY more Pop! Series 1 vinyls were made in comparison to Park 1 vinyls.
- If you search for vinylmation on eBay, you will come up with over 10,000 listings. If you remove the words pin or pins from your search, you will still get almost 8,000 listings. Pop! Vinyls (which are in their infancy) have about 110. Most of these listings are related to the SDCC and D23 releases. Currently released non-exclusive Pop! vinyls are pretty rare in the completed listings.
- Currently, the following exclusives are selling for the listed prices. All 3-inch exclusives had a $15 price tag and 9″ exclusives went for $50.
- SDCC Maleficent 9″ LE 360–$100
- SDCC Buzz 9″ LE 360–$95 (very few of these have sold despite listings for ~$100)
- SDCC Metal Mickey LE 480–$30
- SDCC Glow in the Dark Mike W LE 480–$35
- SDCC Retro-suit Mr. Incredible LE 480–$34
- SDCC Flocked Sulley LE 480–none have sold with listings at $35
- D23 Steamboat Willie LE 360–$120
- D23 Flocked Lotso LE 480–$50
3. Since Disney Pop! Vinyls are relatively new, I also wanted to look at what the market holds for older Funko items. Currently, there are over 5,000 items listed with the word funko in it’s title. By looking through the completed listings, it appears to be pretty rare for items to sell for over $50 if it is not one of the Disney releases.
Observations and Speculation
Will Pop! Vinyls create the same craze on the secondary market once certain series are out of print? Doubtful. I do think popular characters will increase in value, but not to the extent of a Park 1 or Urban 1. Currently, there is no allure to collect ALL of them. The “chase” is currently missing (which will change to some extent once series 1 is sold out). With the built in fan base of Disney, I do think people will become interested in retired figures if they hooked later on, but the fan base would have to swell quite extensively to cause prices to jump.