Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Walt Disney Collectors Society Suspended :(

Throughout the morning, I received numerous emails/inquiries regarding the status of the Walt Disney Collectors Society. Like everyone else, I had not heard anything so began making inquiries with some dealer friends. Spoke with Ray at Gallery of the Lakes and he told me of a memo that was sent out to the sales force earlier today. The memo is as follows:

Valued collectors of the Walt Disney Classics Collection will be pleased to know that we are committed to continuing to celebrate the artistic legacy of Disney animated films through these exquisite and innovative porcelain sculptures.

In just days we will be announcing an exciting lineup of new Walt Disney Classics Collection sculptures for 2010, which will feature both rarely depicted characters and perennial favorites to delight new collectors and those who have been with us since the beginning.

While the Walt Disney Classics Collection will continue with many new innovative sculptures planned, we regret that the Walt Disney Collectors Society will be suspended at the end of this year. Details are being mailed directly to Walt Disney Classics Collection authorized retailers and Walt Disney Collectors Society Members now.

Collectors will be able to sign up for new release information on our website
www.WaltDisneyClassicsCollection.com. We also will be working with authorized retailers to provide supplemental information.

Ray confirmed we should be hearing something as early as next week regarding sculptures planned for 2010. Being a member of the Society since the charter year, am very sorry to hear that it's being suspended. Prefer to hear it was suspended vs. being discontinued completely.

The Walt Disney Classics Collection was introduced in January, 1993. Jiminy Cricket was the charter membership gift sculpture and named the mascot of the Walt Disney Collectors Society. The 1st Members Only offering was Mickey Mouse as the Tailor from The Brave Little Tailor (1938).

14 comments:

Alex said...

This makes me really sad. The annual membership kit has always been a perfect xmas gift. I joined five years a ago and it alway was like a box of chocolates, you'll never knew whether it was a good one or not, but it was there.
I can not find any reason why they suspended the society. From the marketing view: they always had the up to date addresses of the collectors, perfect for doing direct marketing and email marketing, which they rarely did.
From the sales view: Since most of the members wanted to keep their member status, they bought the yearly membership kit and didn't care if they liked the figurine or not.
If the price of the kit isn't cost-covering any longer, I don't think many members would have quit if they adapt the price.

Alex :(

Babette said...

With the release of D23 this past year as "the official community for Disney Fans", I'm not surprised that the WDCS was suspended. It wouldn't surprise me if Disney doesn't want competition from other Disney collector clubs and are trying to push WDCS members over to D23 (if they haven't signed up already). Maybe there will be some synergy opportunities between D23 and WDCC in the future, which is a good thing.

As long as the WDCC exists, I'm a happy camper. It's been a wonderful ride as a charter member of the WDCS, from the first time I read the Jiminy membership ad in the old Disney Magazine that got me hooked, thru almost all the conventions, to making wonderful amazing friends... I never envisioned signing up for that initial membership would send me on such a fantastic Disney journey.

I am truly proud to be a charter WDCS member and THANKFUL for all the joy it's brought over these many many years! Thanks to everyone at Enesco who continue to support the WDCC and I'm looking forward to 2010 and beyond!

jmbunkyjr said...

I really don't get it. If they are still pushing pieces out and things are continuing what is the big deal with taking one of the years pieces and making it the membership piece? I know there is alot more that does with this such as the paper mailings and such but is it all that much money in the end? Maybe it is, I don't know but I bet things will begin to dwindle down little by little now. I can see it becoming a collection that only comes out with stuff for the D23 events and such to make money on that end. That would prop create a real craze for pieces.

I don't know maybe I'm wrong. I hope I am. I hope they don't cut away from this collection little by little. I really don't want to see it disappear. One of the main reasons we started collecting was because of all the great people we met. When I look at my collection I think of the signings and times spent with you all. I really don't want to look at my curio's and think "holy crap I went crazy trying to get this piece cause it was for an event only that you had to be at". I want to be able to look at them and say to Kristen, "that was a cool weekend. Meeting so and so was the best and seeing everyone again was great".

Matthew said...

This is so sad!

Membership in the Walt Disney Collectors Society has meant infinitely more to me than D23! I could say a lot more, but I'm afraid I'd wind up throwing D23 under the bus...

Thanks (appropriate on Thanksgiving Day) to all of you that were involved in making the Collectors Society so wonderful for so many years. Your hard work and dedication has been sincerely appreciated by tons of collectors! From the beginning your dedication and passion have shown through.

Matthew

disneynorth said...

Wow! This is very disappointing. I really, truly, believe that this stems from Enesco taking over the collection.

Which ticks me off even more, is that I just renewed! Will I receive a full year's worth of benefits then? Probably not....

Art Partners Collectibles Inc. said...

D23 had NOTHING at all to do with this.. Nothing, D23 is a fan based program what should INCREASE the awareness of the membership. Lack of being able to produce on time, economic situations, the drop in membership and the over all costs are really behind it and i totally believe that. Not that they will ever say that. If you were at the dealers end you would see the writing was on the wall all year long, especially with a 5 month back order on the Dopey IMK.. this is shocking BUT not surprising to any of us dealers.

simba1814 said...

With this announcement made it makes me wonder about another rumor that I heard. I have heard that this coming year marks the end of the Classics Collection completely, anyone know if this might be true?

BJ said...

I really hope not, although that may help in terms of collecting. I feel like a) the WDCS member pieces were never really that interesting (save for the 2008 one, but being a DD fan, I almost bit on that, but $60 was way too much at that point in time for me. Even weirder, D23's membership price is pretty awful.

Unless the WDCS is actually going to be folded into D23 (thru some strange coincidence), $75 for some dinky fan magazine and a bunch of pseudo-extras to "appease fans" won't get me on board for sure. However, if D23 were sold as "the new Walt Disney Collectors Society", which would be sold in stores as well as online. THEN I'd probably jump on board, especially if I could get vouchers for some major D23-exclusive goodies (like that WDT set...).

BJ

BIGDISFAN said...

My dealer just showed me the 2010 releases from WDCC. They did not even hear from Enesco the club has been suspended.
Anyway, I hope the ltd. Ed. King Louie I ordered today actually comes- he's awesome. The Alice piece is great too!

TROY said...

I think the rumors of it ending might be true. I have purchased over the last few weeks quite a few statues from Marshall's and TJMax Stores. These statues are supposed to be sold only through Disney and authorized reseller's. I Live in Washington State and there were a lot being sold in multiple stores for almost 1/3 of the cost. This is not a good sign..

Paul said...

They are the same as every other big company. They get you involved in the fever of belonging and buying then they pull the rug out from under your feet. Guess they found a new way to bleed money from their loyal following. Took the Conventions away and now this. Well I don't feel the happiness from the happiest place on earth.

nanny said...

My husband was a member back in 2000, of the Disney Society. He passed away in 2004 and unfortunately I have to sell the pieces. Trying to find out how I can do that,I have a lot of the society pieces. I can leave my email address if there is anyone can assist me please contact me. nancyhodge1957@yahoo.com. Thank you Nancy

Tim Carbaugh said...

Wondering if you had any luck selling I am in a situation where I need to sell mine

Tim Carbaugh said...

Wondering if you had any luck selling I am in a situation where I need to sell mine