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The Unpredictable Gamble of Collecting Vintage Toys

If you are a child of the 80s, this week’s story of the latest vintage toy to sell for over half a million dollars (a Star Wars Boba Fett action figure) will probably cause you more than a few pangs of regret. What if you had kept those action figures in mint condition instead of tossing them off your roof trying to make them fly? Or, um, some other less specifically destructive memory.
Every time a toy like this sells, it makes me wonder the same question: what current toy might be worth buying and holding onto for decades until it could also command a big auction price for being “vintage”?
It’s a tough question to reverse engineer, particularly if you consider the backstory of the Boba Fett as a case study. It turns out, the exorbitant selling price in this case only came because the toy was a rare mistake from the production line combined with a product recall that made it extremely rare. Given the luck required, there are probably more reliable ways to make a buck … like by inventing a story about a haunted rubber duck.

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In addition to Non-Obvious Thinking, Rohit is the author of 10 books on trends, the future of business, building a more human brand with storytelling and how to create a more diverse and inclusive world.

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