Panini Group

Panini S.p.A
Industry Collectibles, Digital Media, Distribution, Licensing and Publishing
Founded Modena, Italy (1961)
Founder Giuseppe Panini
Headquarters Modena, Italy
Area served
Products Books, Comic Books, Magazines, Stickers, Trading Cards and Trading Card Games
Revenue €751 million (2014)[1]
Owner Panini Management and Fineldo
Number of employees
1000+ (2014)[1]
Subsidiaries PAN
Panini America, Inc.
Panini Comics
Panini Digital
The Licensing Machine

Panini is a company headquartered in Modena, Italy, named after the Panini brothers who founded it in 1961.[1] The company produces books, comics, magazines, stickers, trading cards and other items through its collectables and publishing subsidiaries.[2][3] Panini distributes its own products, and products of third party providers.[4] Panini maintains a Licensing Division to buy and resell licences and provide agency for individuals and newspapers seeking to purchase rights and comic licences..[5] Through Panini Digital the company uses voice-activated software to capture football statistics, which is then sold to agents, teams, media outlets and video game manufactures.[6] New Media operates Panini's on-line applications, and generates income through content and data sales.[7]


Benito and Giuseppe Panini were operating a newspaper distribution office in Modena, Italy during 1960, when they found a collection of figurines (stickers attached with glue) that a Milan company was unable to sell. The brothers bought the collection, and sold them in packets of two for ten lire each. They sold three million packets. Having had success with the figurines Giuseppe founded Panini in 1961 to manufacture and sell his own figurines. Benito joined Panini the same year. Panini sold 15 million packets of figurines in 1961.[8][9][10] 29 million units were sold the following year, and brothers Franco and Umberto Panini joined the company in 1963.[8] Umberto Panini died on 29 November 2013 at the age of 83.[11]

The company became well known in the 1960s for its football collections, which soon became popular with children. Rare stickers (figurine) can reach very high prices on the collectors' market. Some popular games were invented which used stickers as playing cards. The slogan "Stick with Panini" could once be heard in a jingle following the television advertisements that Panini aired during children's programming.

In 1970 Panini began publishing L’Almanacco Illustrato del Calcio Italiano (The Illustrated Guide to Italian Football), after purchasing the rights from publishing house Carcano. Panini also published its first FIFA World Cup sticker album for the 1970 World Cup in Mexico, in addition to using multilingual captions and selling stickers outside of Italy for the first time. Another first for Panini, in the early 1970s, was introducing self-adhesive stickers; as opposed to using glue.[8]

In 1986 Panini created a museum of figurines which they donated to the city of Modena in 1992.[12][13]

In May 2006, Panini partnered with The Coca-Cola Company and Tokenzone to produce the first Virtual Sticker Album for the FIFA World Cup. The album was viewable in at least 10 different languages, such as Portuguese, Dutch, English, French, German, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Korean and Spanish.[14]

In January 2009, Panini acquired an exclusive licence to produce NBA trading cards and stickers effective with the 2009-10 NBA season.[15] On 13 March 2009, Panini acquired the US trading card manufacturer Donruss Playoff LP. With it, Panini inherited Donruss' NFL and NFLPA licences.[16]

In March 2010, Panini acquired a licence from the NHL and NHLPA.[17] The 2010-11 ice hockey season was the first in five years that more than one company, Upper Deck, has produced cards.[18] The classic stickers today are complemented by collectible card game Adrenalyn XL.

In 2010, Panini acquired a licence to create an official sticker collection for the Olympic and Paralympic Games in London 2012.[19]

In 2014, Panini made cards for that year's FIFA World Cup.

Panini America

In January 2009, the NBA announced Panini would become the exclusive trading card partner of the NBA beginning with the 2009-10 season. In March of the same year, The Panini Group purchased assets of the industry’s second-oldest trading-card company, Donruss, and formed the new subsidiary, Panini America.

Since that time, Panini has taken significant steps to fortify its position on the basketball landscape, including an exclusive agreement with five-time NBA champion Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers as its official company spokesman and global trading card ambassador. In March 2010, the National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) and National Hockey League (NHL) granted the Panini Group a multi-year trading card license, marking the third major sports license that The Panini Group had secured since establishing a presence in the U.S. in 2009.

In September 2011, Panini America inked a trading card agreement with the Major League Baseball Players Association and is the only trading card manufacturer in the world with a presence in all four major U.S. sports . In the months since, Panini America added agreements with the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum and USA Baseball.

This subsidiary is fast becoming the most significant publisher of collectibles in the U.S. with official licenses for NBA, NFL, FIFA, The Collegiate Licensing Company, Disney, DreamWorks, Warner Bros., and other key properties from many other licensors. Panini also has exclusive partnerships with Pop Warner Little Scholars, Inc., the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, and Pro Football Hall of Fame.

As of February 2015 the two most popular North American sports sticker albums on the secondary trading market were the 2015 NFL Sticker Collection and the 2014 NFL Sticker Collection, both Panini titles.[20]

Panini family

Giuseppe Panini, the eldest brother and the founder of this business, and a collector himself, financed the creation of the Raccolte Fotografiche Modenesi (Modena's photographic collections), an archive of more than 300,000 photographs and a similar number of postcards, describing the life of the city and the evolution of photographic art.


  1. 1 2 3 "Panini Group: Corporate". Panini Group.
  2. "Panini Group: Collectibles". Panini Group. Retrieved 2010-04-16.
  3. "Panini Group: Publishing". Panini Group. Retrieved 2010-04-16.
  4. "Panini Group: Distribution". Panini Group. Retrieved 2010-04-16.
  5. "Panini Group: Licensing Out". Panini Group. Retrieved 2010-04-16.
  6. "Panini Group: Panini Digital". Panini Group. Retrieved 2010-04-16.
  7. "Panini Group: New Media". Panini Group. Retrieved 2010-04-16.
  8. 1 2 3 "Panini: FAQ". Panini Group. Retrieved 2010-04-18.
  9. "Fifty Years of Italian History Through Famous Album". ANSA. Retrieved 2010-04-18.
  10. "The Pleasure of the Figurines, from Album 40 Years of Heroes". Ricerca. Retrieved 2010-04-18.
  12. "The Museum". Museum of Figurines. Retrieved 2010-04-18.
  13. "Sandwiches new adventure museum made figurines". L'espresso. Retrieved 2010-04-18.
  14. "Coca-Cola and Panini Launch First Digital Trading Platform: Officially Licensed Football Stickers for 2006 FIFA World Cup Germany". Coca-Cola. Retrieved 2010-04-18.
  15. "Topps No Longer Tops with NBA." CNBC
  16. "Panini Buys Donruss." CNBC
  17. "NHL and NHLPA Awards Panini with Multi-Year Trading Card License". Panini Group. Retrieved 16 April 2010.
  18. "Angilly: Panini, Upper Deck each get NHL deals". The Bristol Press. Retrieved 2010-04-18.
  19. Panini to make Olympic debut with London 2012 sticker collection, The Guardian, 14 July 2010
  20. Stickerpoints most popular collections
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