Royal Canadian Mint Numismatic Segment Performance

The Royal Canadian Mint recently issued their 2012 Annual Report. I have previously provided a summary of overall results in this article. For this post, I wanted to specifically explore aspects of their numismatic segment which delivered stellar performance, achieving the highest revenue in the Mint’s history.

The recent success of the RCM’s numismatic segment is clearly no accident. The results are driven by an increase in product offerings which span a wide range of price points, low mintage levels which foster frequent sell outs, and targeted initiatives which have been very successful at attracting new customers. On top of these strategic factors are well conceived, often exceptionally designed, and frequently innovative coins which capture the enthusiasm of a growing base of collectors.


The numismatic and collectibles segment recorded revenue of $145.1 million for 2012, representing an increase of 56.02% compared to the prior year. The growth in this segment was in contrast to a decline of 22.11% for bullion and refinery (by far the largest segment by revenue), an increase of 11.56% in circulating coinage, and a decline of 10.88% in foreign coinage.

Although the RCM does not provide specific figures, bullion and foreign coinage are low margin segments, whereas the numismatic segment presumably delivers much higher margins. Therefore the growth in numismatic sales may have been key in preserving overall profit levels for the year. Despite a decline of more than $500 million in overall revenue, net income fell by just $3.1 million compared to the prior year.


A breakdown of numismatic revenue by region shows 76.9% from Canada with the remaining 23.1% from other countries. Growth occurred across all regions with the strongest growth in the Asia-Pacific region and the US.

During 2012, the RCM offered 136 new products. This was the most ever introduced in a single year. The RCM mentioned a “fresh focus on the customer” and “precisely targeted offers”.

More than any other Mint, the RCM seems to target the entire spectrum of demand for numismatic products from low price clad offerings to numismatic luxury items like 5 kilo silver coins and 1 kilo gold coins. The RCM also issues numismatic coins which cover a broad array of topics, ranging from dinosaurs to plants, from Canadian sporting events to anniversaries of international interest such as the Titanic centennial. Finally, in addition to more traditional gold and silver offerings, the RCM has offered innovative coins including those incorporating multiple finishes, using non traditional metals such as niobium, using glow in the dark technology, Venetian glass, Swarovski crystal elements, diamonds, holograms, colorization, and more.

While not every product will appeal to every collector, most collectors should be able to find something within their sphere of interest.


Of the 136 products released in 2012, 60 achieved a sell out. This was a new high and more than double the previous record. The RCM clearly views sell outs as strategically important and formulates pricing and mintage levels with certain targets in mind. From the annual report: “Sellouts are also important because they increase the secondary market value of our products and drive customers to our dealer and distributor partners thus supporting the business line aim of sustainable growth across all channels.”

During the year, the volume of numismatic coins increased by 89.5% to 3.6 million pieces. The number of transactions increased 75.7% to 599,000, reflecting substantial growth in the Mint’s customer base.


The RCM shared some insights into their popular Exchange $20 for $20 Program, which has offered silver coins with a legal tender value of $20, priced at their face value. One of the goals of this offering seems to be to attract new customers, where it has clearly found much success. According to the annual report, the program was responsible for capturing approximately 67,000 new customers and a great deal of these went on to become repeat customers with 49.1% making a second purchase.

Looking ahead, the RCM states that they plan to issue over 200 new products in 2013. This will include coins made with niobium and holograms. Further comments included:

“The Mint is committed to building the market for numismatic products by offering themes and designs with wider commercial appeal at affordable price points.”

“The Mint also remains committed to supporting secondary markets by balancing pricing and mintages to sellout about one-third of the numismatic coins issued.”

A pdf copy of the full Royal Canadian Mint 2012 annual report can be found here.

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  1. Alan says

    Just a friendly comment… not trying to start a discussion… One thing I would like to see from RCM is high(er) relief designs. I think that would really round out their variety of coinage nicely, and attract perhaps a few more buyers. 🙂 Take a look at coins made 100, 200 years ago, and then take a look at coins nowadays, and the modern coins are rather flat in appearance. I know low relief was made possible by modern die and coin making technology, but that doesn’t mean it is artistically “better” than a high-relief design. I’m sure low relief is more economical (cheaper), especially when it comes to circulation coinage.

  2. VABEACHBUM says

    I had bought RCM coins over the years, but they definitely hooked me as a dedicated customer with the 20-20 program. It has become a great series of very diverse designs, with the potential to become a very nice type-set. And, if the RCM does this right, I think the 20-20 program still has a lot of life left in it.

    As for HR coins from the RCM, I’m slowly building a type-set of HR coins from multiple mints. The RCM have offered several HR coins in the past 5-6 years. My favorite is the 2008 Poppy, while the 2013 Moon Mask that Louis had mentioned is another nice piece. Some of their other HR issues include the Queen’s Jubilee and the 3-coin “Royal Line” for Crown Prince Charles, Prince William and Prince Harry.

    The most interesting thing about the HR coins from the RCM is the fact that they do not use the concave strike on a thicker, smaller diameter blank. The RCM strikes the high relief onto a flat surface, further accentuating the HR effect. Not nearly the cameo effect of the concave strikes from other mints, but the devices are much more visible on a larger field.

    I’m excited about the way the RCM is managing their numismatic programs, but especially in terms of mintages, pricing and availability. Apparently, other collectors are, too.

  3. Schalk says


    Check out the new 100 for 100 program. Only 50,000 coins minted with a bison motif – 3 per customer.

  4. saucexx says

    I definitely like the face value, but I wish the 100 for 100 was more than one oz of silver…………

  5. Louis says

    Schalk- I looked for the mintage for the 100 for 100 and could not find it. Where did you see it? Thanks.

    Hey, you can always spend this when you are in Niagara Falls and make someone’s day!

  6. Schalk says


    The mintage is right under the specifications of the coin. I will be surprised if it lasts for another 2 days!

    Compositionfine silver (99.99% pure)
    Finishmatte proof
    Weight (g) 31.6
    Diameter (mm)40
    Certificatenot serialized
    Face value100 dollars
    ArtistClaudio D’Angelo (reverse), Susanna Blunt (obverse)

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