Baseball card company Topps to go public through SPAC deal

Topps trading cards are arranged for a photo in Richmond, Virginia.

Jay Paul | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Best known for its baseball cards and line of bazooka candies, Topps has agreed to go public through a merger with Mudrick Capital Acquisition Corporation II, a specialty acquisition firm valued Topps at $ 1.3 billion to go.

Former Disney CEO Michael Eisner remains Chairman of Topps.

The transaction is expected to close in the late second or early third quarter. The combined company is called Topps and is traded on the Nasdaq under the ticker “TOPP”. The New York Times deal book was the first to report on the deal.

Topps’ net sales rose 23% to $ 567 million in 2020, a record high for the company. While Topps is best known for its sports trading cards, it has branched out into interactive mobile apps to connect collectors and recently expanded to include non-fungible tokens, a new breed of digital asset. Ownership of an NFT is recorded on a blockchain, similar to the networks that support cryptocurrencies. Each NFT is unique and cannot be duplicated, just like an original painting or a rare baseball card.

Topps also has a gift card business called Topps Digital Services, partnering with companies like Netflix, Airbnb and Nike. The candy segment includes well-known brands such as Bazooka, Ring Pop and Baby Bottle Pop.

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