In this blog we want to explain to you the production process that goes into a Funko Pop! Knowing this information will further serve you in determining if a Pop! is fake.
Funko factories for production exist in both China and Vietnam. Knowing this allows us to realize this may cause differences in the products depending on where they are produced. Both places make solid looking and feeling items.
The chosen manufacturing facility schedules the new item to be run. The size of the production run depends on market research. If an item is more popular such as Disney, Marvel, Star Wars or many other major genres then the run can be significantly larger. Some ideas may lead to smaller lots distributed primarily through boutique distributors or limited pieces for convention exclusives.
Figure designers create the paint schemes and paint options for the figures. The same process is also done for the packaging. The same factories that manufacture the figures also decorate and package them, though the packaging may be subcontracted. The manufacturer is also responsible for creating the blister pack, or the clear plastic enclosure that holds the figure snug in its box.
The manufacturer then sends a physical example of the figure along with packaging for Funko to review. This is to match the artists and production team’s intent as well as spell check the box. Paint and packaging also represent the most common collector variations of the products.
Once there is approval the factories then produce, paint and package the final products. Most products have a date stamp sticker placed on the bottom of the box. They are sent for inspection to find any faulty products. They are then put into containers on ships bound for Washington state.
Manufacturing capacity and capability, packaging, distribution and go-to-market strategy must all be planned for regardless of existing distribution channels and be done for every new product concept.
The production process discussed above would suggest that there is room for error and variations throughout this process. When considering known variations we know that they come in the form of color, font, texture or glossiness of the box, sticker variations or any number of other things. But also many Pops! are identical with the exception of minor variations such as a color shading or sticker placements. We found Pops! That had such small variations that we could not conclude if it was a real or fake Pop!
Some Questions To Consider:
Can different production facilities produce color, box, sticker or other variations based on the production process?
Could the length of the run produce color distortion from the first produced item to the last given that ink could possibly run out and need to be changed on a long run? Could the same happen with the boxes?
If the packaging is subcontracted is it subcontracted to multiple vendors and could that make the products may look different?
When product gets sent for approval what is the wait time and could there be discrepancies in the facility during this time or is it possibly the pop goes to an entirely different facility?
Please watch for our third Son and Popz blog which will further dive into the discussion of Fake vs. Real Funko’s!