Thursday, March 24, 2011

Upper Deck Unveils First-to-Market ‘Evolution’ Video Trading Cards

Trading card company revolutionizes the marketplace with self-contained video trading cards featuring a star-studded football lineup!

Carlsbad, CA (March 24, 2011) – The Upper Deck Company has done it again. From the company that introduced the first-ever anti-counterfeit holograms on trading cards with its 1989 debut, and brought game-used jersey swatches, bat slivers and even cut signatures of deceased greats of the game to its cards, comes another industry first. Without further adieu, Upper Deck is ready to unveil its ground-breaking “Evolution” video trading cards, which will be appearing inside its much-anticipated 2011 Upper Deck Football release on April 12.

“I founded Upper Deck on innovation and even today we continue to reinvent the trading card,” said Richard McWilliam, Upper Deck’s owner and CEO. “I have always dreamed of bringing this type of technology to market and we are pleased to be the first to do so as the leader in the category. I believe Upper Deck’s ‘Evolution’ trading cards will capture the imagination of sports fans around the world for what trading cards can be and how far they have come.”

Four standout gridiron stars comprise the initial unveiling of the “Evolution” inserts: running back Adrian Peterson, quarterback Tony Romo, wide receiver DeSean Jackson, and hard-hitting linebacker Patrick Willis. Each of the booklet-type cards, which measure in at the same height (3.5”) and width (2.5”) as a regular trading card, are just over half-an-inch thick, so their discovery in boxes of 2011 Upper Deck Football will certainly make a big impression on collectors.

“From the onset, it was important to us that this new insert was a trading card first, otherwise it would just be a video player,” Jason Masherah, Upper Deck’s vice president of Marketing. “The cards are built like our premium booklet trading cards with a video monitor built into the card. The beauty behind these cards is that they are self-contained. You don’t need any other gadgets or a computer to play them. You simply open the cover and press play. A video screen with 60 seconds’ worth of highlight reel footage of the player immediately starts playing. The card also has a port so it can be recharged as well.”

Upper Deck is currently running a series of online “Evolution” banner ads to create anticipation for the fast-approaching launch and has a special landing page devoted to the product’s debut next month: To see the company’s new Evolution teaser video, click on the following link:

Upper Deck chose to utilize its exclusive agreement with the Collegiate Licensing Company, signed in 2009, to unveil this new technology. Therefore, each of the aforementioned players – and their video footage – is shown during his collegiate playing days. Peterson starred at the University of Oklahoma, Romo threw passes for Eastern Illinois, Jackson caught touchdowns for the Cal Bears and Willis made sensational tackles for Mississippi.

“Our partnership with Upper Deck has allowed us to bring our fans new and innovative products never before seen in the trading card market,” said David Kirkpatrick, CLC’s vice president of Non-Apparel Marketing. “We are excited to share such in such an important launch, and are confident that collectors and college fans alike will embrace this revolutionary new product.”

Other hobby firsts pioneered by Upper Deck have included “PowerDeck” in 1999, which was the world’s first digital trading card that could be viewed on a computer’s DVD player and contained video footage of the featured player, along with music, photos, player profiles and statistics; “Haircut-Signature” cards in 2008, which sported actual strands of hair and cut signatures from deceased historical figures including George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and Thomas Jefferson; and oversized “Entomology” cards in 2009, which contained actual insects/bugs that were showcased in their entirety inside beautifully designed shadowbox cards.