PCGS president to step down

Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS) President Brett Charville, of Orange County, Calif., is stepping down from his role with the third-party grading service.

Charville, who has served at the helm since January 2019, will continue working with PCGS while his successor is selected. His departure date depends on finding a new PCGS president and the subsequent transition period, according to a June 24 company statement.

“This role has been the experience of a lifetime. I am proud of the things we have accomplished, and I look forward to working with the PCGS team to ensure a smooth transition to new leadership,” Charville said.

PCGS is a division of Collectors Universe, which was acquired last November by an investor group led by entrepreneur and sports card collector Nat Turner for about $700 million US (about $910 million Cdn.).

“During his presidency, Charville pursued groundbreaking projects for PCGS and was an agent for positive changes in the industry,” said Collectors Universe CEO Joe Orlando. “His many achievements at the helm include record annual performance, significant enhancement of PCGS’ international business and the introduction of near-field communication anti-counterfeiting technology in all holders.”

Charville joined PCGS amid “a somewhat tumultuous time,” Orlando added, “and battled through adversity with us during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic a little more than a year later.”

“If you have been at a company as long as I have, losing good people from time to time comes with the territory. It’s never easy, but it’s a part of managing an ever-evolving business, regardless of the industry.”

A PCGS holder encapsulates a 1946 $1 coin in Mint State-63 condition. Photo by Heritage Auctions

OTHER U.S. GRADING SERVICES

PCGS is one of several major U.S.-based third-party grading services. It is among the four grading services eBay – the world’s largest online coin marketplace – accepts for its listings; the other three include:

  • the Colorado-based American Numismatic Association Certification Service (ANACS), founded by the American Numismatic Association (ANA) in 1972 and now known as “America’s Oldest Grading Service”;
  • the Sarasota, Fla.-based Numismatic Guaranty Corp. (NGC), founded in 1987; and
  • the Tampa, Fla.-based Independent Coin Graders, founded in 1998.

NGC has been the ANA’s official grading service since 1995, six years after the ANA sold ANACS to the publisher of Coin World magazine. NGC has also served as the Professional Numismatists Guild’s official grading service since 2004.

ANACS was acquired by another Colorado company, Driving Force, in 2007.

In 2019, Jason Bradford, the former president of PCGS Currency, founded Legacy Currency Grading (LCG). In CCN Vol. 58 #8, Bradford wrote a letter to the editor (“Legacy owner explains debts”) to respond to his recent legal issues.

Canadian Coin Certification Service was launched in Québec in 2004.

“Because of difficult circumstances resulting from a breakup with my ex-girlfriend and business partner, my former company K3B, Inc. – then doing business under the ‘PCGS Currency’ brand name – was unable to continue doing business and closed temporarily in January 2019. The resulting financial constraints caused the company to default on loan payments to Stack’s Bowers, and other company and personal debts and obligations were unpaid at that time as well.”

The company resumed operations under the LCG name “later in 2019,” he wrote, adding, “Once the company resumed business and regular cash flow made repayments possible, these payments began and have continued to the present time.”

“Regarding the judgement obtained by Stack’s Bowers against me and K3B, Inc., we reached an agreement with Stack’s Bowers last fall to re-pay the original debt in return for the judgement being dropped.”

A copy of the agreement and detailed repayment terms were shared with CCN for verification.

“That debt is scheduled to be completely repaid by the end of 2022,” Bradford said, adding “all other company debts” and “personal obligations resulting from the old company” will be “repaid in full without exception”

International Coin Certification Service unveiled a new certificate ticket (shown), held inside each of the firm’s flip holders, earlier this year.

CANADIAN GRADING SERVICES

In Canada, two established firms serve most of the domestic market for coins.

The Toronto-based International Coin Certification Service (ICCS), formed in 1986, is the country’s longest-running third-party grading service. While ICCS grades most world coins, it specializes in Canadian dollars. All ICCS-certified coins are held in an inert polyethylene terephthalate (PET) envelope and sealed in a plastic flip holder. A certification ticket – recently redesigned to include more comments and a security watermark – is also sealed within the other side of the flip.

The country’s newest coin grading service, Canadian Coin Certification Service (CCCS), was formed in 2004. Based in Saint-Hubert, Qué., CCCS uses a similar holder made of mylar (a polyester film made from stretched PET), inside of which a certificate lists the graded coin’s details. The CCCS certificate also uses security features, including a watermark and hot-foil stamp. The company, which is now developing a hard holder for its coins, also grades banknotes, which are also sealed in a protective mylar envelope with a certificate.

For banknote grading in Canada, collectors are also served by Kitchener, Ont.’s Banknote Certification Service (BCS), established in 2008. Since then, BCS has certified nearly 70,000 notes.

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