BAB Souvenir Company

BAB has always represented one of the great mysteries of football sticker producers. Now, with the help of a website visitor, Mark, this website is proud to exclusively reveal at least part of the mystery. Bernard Babani began publishing technical books in 1942. In the late 1950s and early 1960s Clive Sinclair was an employee, and the author of some of their books on transistors. The business became Bernard Babani (publishing) Limited which, as you can see from their website, is still operating today. The company has operated out of offices at The Grampians, Shepherds Bush Road, London since the 1960s. The business is now run by Bernard’s son, Michael.

For some, unknown, reason the company began publishing football memorabilia under the name ‘BAB Souvenir Company’ in 1970 or 1971. I own a poster with the title ‘The Pictorial Map of Soccer‘, which includes the company name and address, and a date of 1971 (poster designed by J. Barnett). The name, as well as the mysterious ‘Members of the BAB Group’ name, is also found on the index sheets for the Century of Sticker Stamps.

I contacted Babani and asked about BAB. I received a reply which stated ‘BAB Souvenir Co was formed in about 1973/4 to produce and sell football souvenirs. It lasted about 18 months and was then closed down’. Hmmm, I dispute the 1973/74 dates! To a follow-up email I received the reply ‘I regret that I do not have any further information about BAB Souvenir Co, nor any records, certainly no copies were kept of any of its products. Sorry I can not be any more helpful.’ It is frustrating to get so close, but fall at the last hurdle. Anyway, thanks to Babani Publishing for answering our emails.

Identification of BAB stickers has always been problematic. I’m not even sure that all the stickers shown on this page were produced by BAB. There is a further complication, in that an issue of some of these stickers was once in a plastic holder which had the names ‘Sparrow and Barnet Ltd’. Could this be the same Barnett/Barnet from my poster?

Do you know anything else about this company? If so, please email me. Untangling the mystery of the B.A.B. stickers is one of the great journeys of this website.

1970 to 1972 - team/club badge stickers

BAB is attributed to a number of club badge stickers, though the attribution is problematic as there is no evidence on the stickers that they were made by BAB. With the discovery of Northern Trancessories it is possible that some of these stickers were produced by them rather than BAB. BAB stickers tended to be sold in plastic hanging shop displays, and it is these displays which sometimes give us the BAB name, as in the example below.

Soccer Dip shields

Soccer Dip was the name used by BAB for three stickers sold for 3p. We can guess that the word ‘Dip’ referred to the lucky dip element of which stickers you bought. The stickers come with either a white or a brown backing paper, and many different design and colour variations, perhaps suggesting many different sets, issues or years.These stickers are slightly larger than the yellow-topped shields.

Sticker size: 70mm x 51mm
Number in set: 44 (that I know of)
Gallery: Set gallery or Team badge master gallery
Checklist: Set checklist

Straight sided badges

This set is printed with brown backs or white backs, suggesting perhaps that they were produced over a number of years. The white backs have ‘FasPrint’, Fasson, Leiden, Holland discernible on the backing paper. The sides to the shields are sharp, as opposed to the rounded sides set . There appears to be a near-identical set to this set, but with a player image in front of the club colours instead of the logo.

Sticker size: 64mm x 47mm
Number in set: Not sure!
Gallery: Set gallery or Team badge master gallery

This set is near-identical to the previous, but with a player image in front of the club colours instead of the logo.

Sticker size: 64mm x 47mm
Number in set: Not sure!
Gallery: Set gallery or Team badge master gallery

Round sided badges

This set is printed with white backs, with ‘FasPrint’, Fasson, Leiden, Holland discernible on the backing paper. The shield designs are different from the straight-sided sets.

There are a number of colour variations in these stickers. I am not sure whether these are re-issues or printing issues.

Sticker size: 60mm x 45mm
Number in set: 53 (that I know of)
Gallery: Set gallery or Team badge master gallery
Checklist: Set checklist

Straight sided badges with gold borders and nicknames

Straight sided badges with gold borders and nicknames. Very rare badges.

Gallery: Set gallery or Team badge master gallery

Player stickers (1970 to 1974)

World Cup footballer circles

Round stickers with the player’s head, name and team name. Plain white backs. The set clearly targets the 1970 World Cup so was produced perhaps just before the tournament, say March 1970?

Number in set: 12
Gallery: Set gallery

Footballer circles

Round stickers with the player’s head, name and team name. Plain white backs. Same style as the international players, but players with team name.

Number in set: 27 (at least)
Gallery: Set gallery

Starburst player circles

Round stickers with the player’s head and name.. The word “permanent” is in red on backs. This set is, apparently, also available with the team name on the sticker. Quite rare!

Number in set: 24 (at least)
Gallery: Set gallery

Shooting Stars

Shield-shaped stickers with the player’s head, name and team name in a yellow box. Plain white backs.

There were updates to some stickers due to transfers. The editions can be dated from player transfers like Alan Birchenall (featured in one set as a Crystal Palace player, and in another as a Leicester City player – transferred in September 1971). Some stickers must have been added later e.g. Alun Evans of Aston Villa, the club he was transferred to in June 1972.

Number in set: 60 (not sure!)
Gallery: Set gallery

Player shields (yellow header)

Set issued before February 1971 (Pop Robson transferred to West Ham in February 1971). The existence of these stickers was unknown before November 2013.

Number in set: Not sure!
Gallery: Set gallery

Player shields, Scottish (yellow header)

Only two known, Jimmy Johnstone and Colin Stein. The existence of these stickers was unknown before 2017.

Number in set: Not sure!

Player shields. 1970 to 1974

Player shields. 1970 to 1974. Garishly coloured shields with drawn player heads. Really interesting set though. Are these really BAB?

Number in set: 60 (not sure!)
Gallery: Set gallery

Century Series of Sticker Stamps (1971)

Century Series of Sticker Stamps

BAB produced a number of these beautiful sheets, copyright 1971. The sheets contained a ‘century of’ i.e. 100, stickers. The football related ones I am aware of are:
1. Soccer favourites
3. Clubs, crests and colours.

The sheets were accompanied by ‘Index sheets’ which provide information for the sticker/ stamps. Sheet 2 is ‘Flags’, while Sheet 4 is  ‘Characters of the Wild West’.

I have dated Sheet 1 as October or November 1971 based on the inclusion of transfers such as Keith Weller, Chelsea to Leicester City in September 1971. Transfers such as Tommy Gemmell from Celtic to Nottingham Forest or Alan Ball from Everton to Arsenal in December 1971 are not recorded.


Number in set: 100 per sheet
Checklists: Soccer favourites – Set checklistTeam checklist