Long partnership ending: private Pobjoy Mint and Isle of Man to part ways in 2017

Isle of Man scales back its long-running collector coin program struck by Pobjoy
By , Coin World
Published : 07/22/16
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The Pobjoy Mint’s longest partnership is ending.

Company officials announced July 19 that the private mint’s relationship with the Isle of Man would be ending in 2017.

The Isle of Man, a self-governing British Crown dependency in the Irish Sea between England and Ireland, was one of the first coin-issuing entities to expand the production and sale of noncirculating legal tender coinage minted in its name. It is also the Pobjoy Mint’s first and longest-lasting nation partner. 

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“Pobjoy Mint has had a long and fruitful relationship with the Isle of Man that has lasted for over 40 years and we wish them well for the future,” according to a statement released by the Pobjoy Mint.

The most well-known coins resulting from the collaboration between the Pobjoy Mint and the Isle of Man are the annual cat coins in a series that began in 1988, and Angel gold bullion coins, issued since 1985. Additionally, the annual Christmas coin program has become an iconic expected issue.

The relationship will end March 24, 2017, the Pobjoy Mint announced, at which time it “will no longer represent the Isle of Man as the official minter of Isle of Man legal tender products.”

That includes the island’s circulating coins, which the Pobjoy Mint also strikes. 

According to the IOM Treasury Department website, “The issue of its own currency is a positive statement of independence and the power of self determination. It is also an important source of investment income which would otherwise accrue to the United Kingdom if that country’s currency was allowed to displace it.” 

Officials with the Isle of Man Treasury had not responded to Coin World’s inquiries by press time July 21. 

According to the Pobjoy Mint, recently, the Isle of Man has announced a reduction in the number of themes that can be produced in any year.

Ron Currie, director of International Sales and Marketing of Bullion and Numismatic Coins at Pobjoy Mint, told Coin World that he doesn’t know why the Isle of Man is reducing its collectible coins footprint.

“We don’t know why actually, but we do know they are cutting it back,” he said. “They haven’t given us a reason.”

The statement from Pobjoy Mint indicated that this change will mean that many Isle of Man coins will no longer be made, and so some of the coins remaining in the inventory of distributors might be sold as “last of” coins.

The Pobjoy Mint is a private mint. What does that mean?

The Pobjoy Mint is an independent coin-striking business that has as its clients a number of small territories, such as the Isle of Man, that do not have their own government mint like the U.S. Mint or Royal Mint.

The Isle of Man — a dependency of the British Crown since 1765 that is located on the Irish Sea, midway between England, Scotland and Ireland — is the Pobjoy Mint's oldest client, but not its only. 

The mint will continue to produce coins for six other issuing authorities: Ascension Island, British Antarctic Territory, British Indian Ocean Territory, British Virgin Islands, Falkland Islands and South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands.

Here's an explanatory video about the Pobjoy Mint:

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