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eBay Offers ‘Witnessed Authentication’ Service for Sports Memorabilia

eBay Offers 'Witnessed Authentication' Service for Sports Memorabilia

eBay is offering a “witnessed authentication” service for sports memorabilia on its marketplace thanks to a partnership with PROVA Group.

“Starting today, sellers can use PROVA Group’s services to verify their items as legitimate, and buyers can rest assured they are getting exactly what they pay for,” according to eBay’s announcement on Tuesday.

The press release did not indicate how much eBay and PROVA Group would charge sellers for using the service.

In the announcement, eBay states:

How PROVA Group authentication works
When purchasing a signed jersey or game-used football for their collection, fans want to trust that the item is as expected. To meet that need, eBay welcomes PROVA Group as an official authentication partner to provide verification in these easy steps:

Tag it – Each authenticated item receives a PROVA SmarTagTM placed by an authorized PROVA team member; the tag is then linked to a PROVA SmartCOATM, an item’s document of authenticity.

Scan it – After tagging, PROVA Group scans the SmarTag to have associated authentication data stored securely in the cloud.

Authenticate it – Authentication is as easy as a quick look-up via provagroup.com.

Sell it… Or don’t – Whether keeping or selling the item, collectors can track their memorabilia via the LEGIT by PROVA app and share an item’s authenticity anytime, anywhere.

Former Super Bowl champion and Texas businessperson Emmitt Smith founded PROVA Group, which will host an auction event to publicize the new service at ebay.com/Emmitt22 featuring a verified sports cards and memorabilia from Smith’s personal collection.

You can find details in the full announcement on the eBay corporate blog.

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). She is a member of the Online News Association (Sep 2005 - present) and Investigative Reporters and Editors (Mar 2006 - present). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com. See disclosure at EcommerceBytes.com/disclosure/.

5 thoughts on “eBay Offers ‘Witnessed Authentication’ Service for Sports Memorabilia”

  1. just another way fleecebay will stick their grubby hands deeper into a sellers pocket.

    and of course fleecebay does not release the cost to use this service.

  2. I don’t think they should be using terms like “Witnessed Authentication’”. Makes one think of recent arrests of ex eBay employees…………….lol.

  3. There are already independent companies capable of doing this. The fact that eBay is backing a new group to do this indicates to me that at some future date, all sports memorabilia will need to have this group’s approval to be listed on eBay. And, of course, a fee would be required to gain this approval.

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