RCM tri-metal token wins IACA award

The Royal Canadian Mint’s tri-metal coin technology won global currency industry recognition this October, when it was crowned the “best new coin product, feature or distribution innovation” at the International Association of Currency Affairs’ (IACA) 2019 Excellence in Currency Awards for Coins.

The honour was officially announced on Oct. 15 at the Coin Conference in Rome, Italy.

“The Mint is proud that our innovations continue to receive worldwide recognition from the International Association of Currency Affairs and our industry peers,” said Marie Lemay, Mint president and CEO.

“We are excited to add our award-winning tri-metal coin technology to the long list of coin solutions offered to our international customers.”

The tri-metal token consists of a brass-plated steel ring and an inner core of nickel-plated steel on one side and copper-plated steel on the opposite side. By arranging multiple materials, the token combines “the most advanced overt and covert security features, including differentiated electromagnetic signatures in vending equipment,” according to a statement issued by the Mint this October.

A die crack on the obverse (left) of several tri-metal tokens was discovered by collectors about a month after their release last October.


Last November, a month after the tri-metal token was issued, collectors discovered several examples with prominent die cracks through the centre of the obverse.

Issued as part of the Mint’s six-piece “R+D” set, which has a mintage of 10,000 sets, the trim-metal token weighs 7.62 grams with a 24.65-millimetre diameter.

Its die-cracked obverse design features the Mint’s logo on the copper-plated steel insert. The die crack crosses the centre of the token from top to bottom through both the inner and outer rings.

Its reverse design depicts a maple leaf on the nickel-plated steel insert.


The Mint also produced New Zealand’s 2018 ‘Armistice Day’ 50-cent circulation coin, which won awards in two of the IACA’s categories.

The Mint also manufactured the Reserve Bank of New Zealand’s 2018 coloured “Armistice Day” circulation coin, which won awards in the “Best New Commemorative Circulating or Test Coin at Face Value” and “Best Circulating Coin Public Education Program, Website, or App” categories.

The Excellence in Currency Awards awards were introduced by IACA in 2007 to promote and recognize excellence in currency issue, production, processing, management and distribution.

The Mint has been recognized through several previous Excellence in Currency awards, including:

  • the Canada 150 commemorative circulation coin program in the “Best New Communications Program” category (2017);
  • joint recognition with the Reserve Bank of New Zealand for New Zealand’s 50-cent Anzac 100th anniversary coloured circulation coin in the “Best New Commemorative or Test Circulating Coin” category (2015);
  • the multi-ply plated steel $1 and $2 circulation coins with advanced security features, introduced in 2012, in the “Best New Coin Innovation” category (2013);
  • the Vancouver 2010 Winter Games commemorative circulation coin program in the “Best New Coins Series” category (2011); and
  • the 2006 “Pink Ribbon” 25-cent circulation coin in the “Best New Coin” category (2007).

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