OFFICIAL RESELLER SPECIAL EDITION
Corinthian had their own transactional online store as we all other retail outlers selling their figures, but what really set them apart was their dedicated and enthusiastic reseller's.
A Corinthian Reseller dealt primarily with the collector and did not just carry the latest releases but also back stock of previously releases and retired product, as well as having the contacts and resources to track down some really rare figures.
The Reseller series was done to promote the hard work and dedication shown by 2 resellers in particular, which were 'Corinthian Paradise' and 'Collector Mania' with the figures not being sold in any collector centre, store or even by Corinthian Direct, it was only available from those 2 official Corinthian Resellers, and of course in Japan via Foot Circle (New Wave Japan), who was the offical Japanese distributor.
In selecting which figures to produce for the series, the 2 Resellers were shown a spreadsheet which detailed which figures Corinthian had 'Blanks' for, (Blanks being basically plastic figures which were yet to be painted) so although the resellers did have some freedom in who they could select, their choice was somewhat limited.
With regards the kit choice again there were of course limitations, over what licenses Corinthian held and of course their own plans to perhaps produce a player in that particular kit within one of their own series. The best example is from the very first series of Reseller Specials, where Antonio Careca is in Brazi away kit, he was intended to be in Brazil home kit, however Corinthian felt at the time they would themselves wish to release a Brazil home kit version of Careca as part of their very popular 'World Greats' series, so it was switched to away kit, as we know Corinthian never did release a home version.
As you will see with the figure details further down this page, production volume varied quite significantly for the series, with a few factors contributing to this. A major factor was Corinthian insisting on a MOQ (minimum order quantity) which was set at 4,000, with that high amount ultimately leading to the range ending at Series 8, bear in mind at this point Corinthian themselves were producing a lot of their own series figures with production under half of the amount they expected a Reseller to commit to and for essentially just a repainted figure, not a brand new sculpt or first time release.
Another factor was of course the amount of 'Blanks' that Corinthian had available, where this really worked in the Resellers favour was Series 4 which had Milan Baros in Czech Republic home kit and Clarence Seedorf in Holland away kit. Corinthian really wanted to use figures of players taking part in the Euro 2004 tournament, however the only 2 options available were Baros and Seedorf and Corinthian only had 1,062 blank Baros and 1,226 blank Seedorf available. Such a low production volume and explains why those 2 are the rarest from the entire Reseller Specials series and shows what the series could and perhaps should have been, a much more limited edition run product.
One other complication was around the contract Corinthian had with it's Japanese dsitrubutor 'New Wave' as any figure that was produced as a Reseller Special, New Wave had to be given at least 50% of the stock made. There was an issue around the Nakata figure in Parma home kit, with the Resellers agreeing an amount to be made, enough to fill demand but not too much that the market is saturated by it and as such would lose its long term collectibility and value, only for this to be massively increased at the request of New Wave, with said Japanese distributor also getting double their ususally allocated stock, and explains why they made 11,767 Nakata Parma home Reseller Specials!
Italy's Serie A was an incredibly popular league in Japan and figures of Serie A teams always sold well within that market, so with New Wave having such a profound influence on Corinthian's decision making at this point, it was no surprise to see that a large percentage of this series features players in Italian Serie A club kits!
Series 1 was released in September 2003 and was an all samba affair, with both figures being in Brazil kits, Emerson in home and Careca away, with 4,244 Emerson and 6,428 Careca being made.
Series 2 features 2 players for Juventus, Christian Vieri and Thierry Henry, with Henry only being at the club a few months before he secured a move to Arsenal. There were 3,977 of each figure made, with them being released in January 2004. The Vieri and Henry were assigned PRO codes that were very much out of synch, the reason they have PRO148 and PRO684 is that to that point they had been unassigned, so Corinthian decided to attach them to a figure as opposed to leaving them vacant.
Series 3 came out in May 2004 and consisted of 2 very popular players from Asia, Ahn Jung-Hwan who was painted in the Perugia home kit, and Hidetoshi Nakata in Parma home kit.
Corinthian made 3.420 Jung-Hwan and
a staggering 11,767 Nakata!
November 2004 saw Series 4 released and contains my personal favourite from the series, Clarence Seedorf in Holland away kit, the other being Milan Baros in the home kit of the Czech Republic. The addition of the Silver balls which were used at the 2004 Euro's were a superb touch and really aided the appeal of the figures, with just 1,062 Baros and 1,226 Seedorf made, they are easily the rarest of the Reseller Specials.
Series 5 was released in January 2005 and was a 3 figure release consisting of Ronald Koeman in Holland home kit, Lothar Matthaus in West Germany home kit and Edgar Davids in Holland away kit, which was the same kit as Seedorf wore in series 4. This was a very popular release as all 3 are fantastic sculpts in excellent kit, with 4,000 of each being produced.
Series 6; releaesed in April 2005, saw a return to Italy's Serie A, with Pavel Nedved in Lazio home kit and Zico in the home kit of Udinese. This would be the only blister pack Corinthian would release for Zico, his only other Corinthian figure being in the Club Gold World Greats Series, which was only available as part of the Platinum Membership package, so this Reseller Special gave collectors an excellent opportunity to add the Brazilian legend to their collection, with 4,000 of each player being made.
Series 7 stayed in Italy and mirrored series 2 with both players being in Juventus home kit, with Salvatore 'Tote' Schillaci and Fabrizio Ravanelli having 4,000 blister packs made, being released in August 2005.
Series 8 was released in November 2005 and would be the final Reseller Special Series but it bowed out in style with a bumper 4 figure series, all of players from Italy's Serie A. Tarbio West in AC Milan home kit, Gheorghe Hagi for Brescia, Paulo Sousa in Parma home kit and Claudio Caniggia in Roma home kit. West, Hagi and Sousa all had 3,453 made but Caniggia went 1 better; literally, having 3,454 blister packs produced.
The figures were released as single blister packs and came with an individually numbered collector card.
PRO945 - Emerson - Brazil - Home
PRO946 - Antonio Careca - Brazil - Away
PRO148 - Christian Vieri - Juventus - Home
PRO684 - Thierry Henry - Juventus - Home
PRO990 - Ahn Jung-Hwan - Perugia - Home
PRO991 - Hidetoshi Nakata - Parma - Home
PRO1082 - Milan Baros - Czech Republic - Home
PRO1083 - Clarence Seedorf - Holland - Away
PRO1097 - Ronald Koeman - Holland - Home
PRO1098 - Lothar Matthaus - West Germany - Home
PRO1099 - Edgar Davids - Holland - Away
PRO1156 - Pavel Nedved - Lazio - Home
PRO1157 - Zico - Udinese - Home
PRO1158 - Salvatore Schillaci - Juventus - Home
PRO1159 - Fabrizio Ravanelli - Juventus - Home
PRO1239 - Taribo West - AC Milan - Home
PRO1240 - Gheorgeh Hagi - Brescia - Home
PRO1241 - Paulo - Parma - Home
PRO1242 - Claudio Caniggia - Roma - Home