CAC Makes Formal Announcement about Switch to Grading Company. Exclusive interview with John Albanese [Podcast]

John Albanese, President of CAC, made official today the industry's worst kept secret -- CAC is officially going into the grading business. CDN has the exclusive video interview!

by CDN Publishing | Published on October 12, 2022

The transition is a huge leap from their formal business model of adding stickers to PCGS and NGC certified coins. But it is also huge news reverberating in the coin industry. It is true there are multiple third party authentication and grading companies, but they have far and away been led by the two dominant services... until now. 

For the first time since 1987 a major player has entered the coin certification business. As someone who played a large role in the creation of both PCGS and NGC, John Albanese may well be the only person who could launch a new service into this market with the credibility needed to take an important position overnight.

There are many questions to be asked and Albanese pledges to do so in the coming months, via a dedicated message board on the CAC web site. 

In the meantime, CDN President, John Feigenbaum, asked a lot of them and in an exclusive conversation with Mr. Albanese earlier this week. Watch it here.  

Read the official press letter CAC is sending to current members:

Dear CAC member,

There have been many rumors swirling about the possibility of CAC becoming a traditional grading service and I believe it is time to address them. Technically speaking, the transaction has not been completed yet. However, I am extremely confident that the transaction will close by the end of 2022. If everything goes according to plan, we anticipate a “soft opening“ in the first quarter of 2023. The new company, CAC Grading, will have the same logo and will be located in a 29,000 square ft. facility in Virginia Beach.

We will keep our Bedminster, NJ office for stickering and customer service. Your CAC member number will remain the same but there will be a new application and submitter agreement as it will be a different corporation. We will also be adding approximately 100 new partners, many you are familiar with. I will be heavily involved as the president and CEO, signing a 10-year contract and spending at least one week per month in Virginia Beach until our team of 3 world class graders morphs into an interchangeable unit. In addition, I will be available 24/7 for tiebreakers if our team can’t come to a consensus.

We’ve already spent weeks collaborating with our grading team and I’m happy to report that we have slight differences of opinion in less than 2% of the coins. CAC stickering will continue through 2023, but our goal is to drastically reduce demand with a new pricing structure. Our loyal collector members will be entitled to submit 20 coins annually at the current normal tier rate and will only be charged for coins that sticker. After the 20-coin limit, the new rate will apply. Applicants that are currently on our waiting list will qualify for this service, as well.

It is very likely stickering will continue into the year 2033, but we do expect to eventually phase out the stickering service. Ultimately, collector members will determine the longevity of this service.

We will of course introduce a user-friendly registry program featuring two new registries. Our most popular registry will include NGC and PCGS coins, stickered or not, and the new CAC-holdered coins. We realize that there are many coins, especially from 1792-1807, that are virtually impossible to collect exclusively in CAC quality, so this registry has potential for broader inclusion. However, the CAC stickered and holdered coins will score higher than the non-CAC examples. The second registry, “CAC exclusive,” will consist solely of NGC-CAC, PCGS-CAC and CAC encapsulated coins. When you submit to us your coin information, your CAC coins will populate and be showcased on both registries.

In order to keep our backlog under control the new company, CAC grading, will continue our current waiting list policy into the foreseeable future. Our goal is to provide top-notch customer service and turnaround times and I don’t believe this could be accomplished with unfettered growth. We aim to be the most consistent premium grading service, not the largest.

As many of you know, we have suspended our economy tier and it is highly possible this may be permanent with the exception of the 20-coin limit mentioned above. If this creates a hardship, please E-mail me at and we will try our best to accommodate.

We understand you may have questions at this time. We are in the process of building a comprehensive FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) section regarding the transition, so please follow the link below to submit your questions or refer to the other questions and answers therein. Your questions and answers will help other members find what they need as well.

We appreciate your support and business through this time of change and are working hard to clear our submission backlog.

Thank you,

The CAC Team

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Source: CDN Publishing

CDN Publishing image The trusted name in numismatic pricing since 1963, CDN Publishing is home to important industry reference and price guides, including the Greysheet, Greensheet, CPG Rare Coin Market Review, and the CAC Rare Coin Market Review, and the Banknote Book. Located in Virginia Beach, you can find out more at, or call 757-655-1056.