Mint Pokemon Illustrator card to sell at Heritage

Heritage Auctions is to offer an extremely rare mint condition Pokemon Illustrator card in its November 17-19 comic art auction.

The card (featuring franchise favourite Pikachu) is considered the Holy Grail among Pokemon collectors and is offered with an opening bid of $11,000 - although it could easily climb past $50,000.

Pokemon Illustrator card
The Pokemon Illustrator card is the Holy Grail of the hobby

It last sold for an undisclosed sum in excess of $47,000 in 2013, making it the most valuable Pokemon card of all time.

The lot is one of an estimated 39 given out to winners and runners up of a drawing competition in Japanese manga magazine CoroCoro Comic in 1998.

Of these, only 10 PSA graded specimens are known (with the present lot being the best).

The card is heavily counterfeited, so collectors prize certification.

The value of top-end sports based trading cards has grown steadily over the last few years, a phenomenon that could well extend to Pokemon cards as the spending power of millennials increases in the coming years.

Heritage commented: "…like an open bottle of soda, the Pokemon cards fizzled out of popularity in the mid-late 2000s.

"Well, parents, break into your child's old room, because there is a chance that these collectible critters were actually an investment."

The sale will also feature rare Golden Age comic books and a collection of underground comic art.  

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