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PCGS Currency Announces Partnership with International Currency Grading

PCGS Currency has announced a major new partnership with International Currency Grading to grade and authenticate World banknotes. The new partnership will combine two of the leading third-party paper money grading services, and will provide collectors and dealers around the world with the combined expertise of the grading teams from both companies. The owners of the United States-based PCGS Currency’s parent company, K3B, Inc., headquartered in Peoria, Illinois, will obtain an interest in International Currency Grading, S.L., located in Madrid, Spain. This partnership will combine the World banknote grading operations of both companies. Notes graded by the new partnership will be certified using the existing market-based PCGS Currency grading standards familiar to collectors and already applied by both companies.

“This is a partnership that will benefit paper money hobbyists around the world in so many ways,” said Jaime Sanz, president and founder of International Currency Grading. “Both companies possess specific areas of expertise and operational strengths that are complimentary to each other. We believe that combining our World banknote grading operations will strengthen both companies, and will give collectors and dealers the best possible opportunity to have their notes authenticated and graded by the world’s leading and most experienced team of paper money experts.”

Jason W. Bradford, president and founder of PCGS Currency, explained the beginnings of the partnership: “During our preliminary discussions with the International Currency Grading team, it quickly became obvious that we share a common business philosophy, common goals, and a common love for the hobby. PCGS Currency has solid brand recognition and is rapidly expanding our growth in the world market, and International Currency Grading has also developed a strong foothold in that market. The existing International Currency Grading office in Spain offers both companies an ideal expansion opportunity both within the European Union, and around the globe. Combining our World grading operations will allow both companies to better reach and serve the logistical needs of currency collectors and dealers around the globe. Our clients in Europe, the Middle East, and other areas, who might have difficulty shipping notes to the United States, now have an easier option to ship notes directly to the International Currency Grading office in Spain.” 

“Jaime Sanz is recognized internationally as a collector, and as a leading expert in the study of World paper money,” continued Mr. Bradford. “Even before the possibility of a partnership was discussed, we respected Mr. Sanz highly because of his top notch reputation in the hobby. His grading team at International Currency Grading has shown that they are committed to serving the collector, and that philosophy matches our own. It’s a natural fit. We can’t imagine a better partner with which to join forces and give buyers and sellers around the world a better option in certifying their collectible banknotes.”

The grading standards used by the two firms will be already familiar to collectors. “The market-based grading standards developed by PCGS Currency more than a decade ago are the standards of the industry, and they are closely aligned with the grading guidelines of the International Bank Note Society (IBNS) which most world collectors have used for decades” says Mr. Sanz. “Paper money collectors and dealers around the world are comfortable with these standards, and the consistent and accurate application of these grading principles is the primary focus of our partnership. Anyone who buys or sells paper money will be able to trust that the entire combined expertise of our two companies comes together in the evaluation of every note that we grade.”

All banknotes submitted to PCGS Currency for certification are examined by a team of impartial professional graders, many of whom are internationally recognized experts and collectors with decades of experience. The combined companies employ more than a dozen full-time and part-time paper money experts, with more than 300 years of combined numismatic experience. Both firms have an explicit policy that prohibits full-time graders and principals from actively buying and selling currency as dealers, so the impartiality of each grading opinion is guaranteed. In addition, the grading opinion assigned to each note certified by PCGS Currency is covered under the most respected grading guarantee in the industry. All World banknotes previously graded by either PCGS Currency or International Currency Grading will also continue to be honored under their respective previous grading warranties.

“We could not be more excited about this partnership with Jaime Sanz and his team at International Currency Grading,” stated Laura A. Kessler, executive vice president of PCGS Currency. “For several years, we have patiently searched for the right partner to help us further our expansion in the world market. This partnership will provide existing and new clients around the world an easier access point for submissions—in addition to the option of shipping notes for grading to our U.S. office, or submitting notes directly to us at shows, collectors and dealers may now ship submissions directly to the International Currency Grading office in Madrid. The combination of the two companies will give us additional manpower and greater visibility by being able to attend more tradeshows around the world. It will give us increased capacity to handle increased demand for our services. And it will give more collectors and dealers around the world the opportunity to entrust their banknotes with PCGS Currency for their long term protection.”

For more information about PCGS Currency, please visit www.PCGSCurrency.com, email info@pcgscurrency.com, or call +1 309-222-8200. For more information about International Currency Grading, please visit www.ICGrading.com, or email help@icgrading.com.