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Marvel To Switch Comic Distributors.

Marvel stays with Diamond in the direct market, but joins Hachette for other distribution.


  Marvel has a new distributor for their non-comic book store products, and The Beat has all the low down information on this new development.

Starting in September, Marvel will have a new distributor to the book trade, Hachette. Marvel was previously distributed by Diamond Book Distributors; Diamond Comics Distributors will continue to distribute Marvel periodicals and books to the comic shop market.

Diamond will still deal with Marvel when is comes to the sale of comic books to comic book stores, but Marvel will now deal with Hachette when it comes to books stores, the online sales world, and a few other places. Diamond has been the way to order comics for the past 5 years, when Marvel signed up with them. The majority of comic book companies went through Diamond, and that was how the world worked.   A lot of this seems to come down to the fact that Marvel wants to have a bigger presence in the comic book market, as well as the book market. I personally don’t know how they could get any bigger, but I’m sure it’s possible.
 
Since last year, when Disney announced the buy-out in Marvel, which happened in January, many people have been dreading what Disney will do with the company.  You could consider this to be the very first change with the company. Although Disney may not have told Marvel to switch distributors, Disney gave Marvel the financial stability and confidence to make this transition, but the point of this is, even though according to the Beat, their sales tripled in the past 5 years with Diamond, to sell more books and reach new customers that were unattainable prior to this switch.

We’re thrilled to be partnering with Marvel. Hachette’s world-class distribution and broad sales reach, combined with Marvel’s outstanding brand and product line, is sure to be a powerful combination.

So, what happens to Diamond? Aren’t they losing one of their biggest clients? Yes, they are, but fear not, they still have big time companies like IDW, Dark Horse, Image, and let’s not forget DC Comics to keep the ball rolling. They won’t have any trouble getting the products to the shelves.  Diamond says it best themselves:

I would say we were definitely prepared for it. We are prepared for many different contingencies. DBD losing Marvel is a big loss, obviously. But without Marvel I still expect DBD sales to be up because we have such a strong list for other clients.

UPDATE: Marvel has clarified things in the past few hours, since it was questionable whether or not Marvel would be doing direct market business with Diamond anymore:

Additionally, Marvel will extend its relationship with Diamond, continuing its commitment to comic shops worldwide. Gabriel explained, “Diamond Book Distributors has been very instrumental in the growth of our graphic novel business, nearly tripling our sales in the book market over the last five years, and we thank them for their efforts. The decision to switch book market distributors was a very difficult one but as evidenced by the extension of our Direct Market agreement, our working relationship with Diamond remains very close. We remain extremely appreciative of our Direct Market retailers and continue to grow that vital market.”

  This change affects how Marvel does business, not with comic book stores, but with other retailers worldwide. The arms of Diamond may not reach to some areas of the country, let alone the world, and Marvel wants to change that. Many speculate that this is in part to the Amazon screw-up where many trades were going for ridiculously low prices.  

the move had been in the works before the recent "Amazon Glitch" which saw DBD client books erroneously offered for sale on Amazon at greatly reduced prices. 

So, we may see more Marvel books in more places and more countries while Marvel still does direct market deals with comic book stores, for now.
What do you guys think about the change in distribution?  What places do you think would do well if they had comics for sale?
 
 
~Mat "InferiorEgo" Elfring is a comedian, teacher, comic book writer, and moderately cool comic store employee~

13 Comments
Posted by xerox_kitty

I think I first read rumours about this here, on CV.  I didn't take it seriously at the time.  Having worked in a comic shop, I couldn't imagine any comic company not using Diamond.  Even now, this seems like a strange step, so strange it's almost unbelievable... but it's two weeks too late for April Fools.  Weird.

Moderator
Posted by sora_thekey

I don't understand this compleatley but I do have question(s)... 
Will this change allow distribution to even more places out of the US? 
When do retailers need to start ordering from the new distributor rather than Diamond? 
 
Does this have anything to do with the screw up from Diamond having $8 Omnibuses on sale?
Moderator
Posted by Illuminarch

Something doesn't compute between this article and the quoted source. Specifically:
 Diamond Comics Distributors will continue to distribute Marvel periodicals and books to the comic shop market.
 
If this is true, then there will be no difference to comic shop owners. My reading is that Hachette will be their distributor only to book stores, like Borders, B&N, and Amazon. 
 
I was also surprised to hear a retailer complain about Diamond getting competition, since its virtual monopoly over comics distribution has been decried by a lot of shop owners since it first happened, since Diamond could dictate harder terms in the amount of money and amount and frequency of issues to be ordered.

Posted by inferiorego
@sora_thekey said:
" I don't understand this compleatley but I do have question(s)... Will this change allow distribution to even more places out of the US? When do retailers need to start ordering from the new distributor rather than Diamond?  Does this have anything to do with the screw up from Diamond having $8 Omnibuses on sale? "
supposedly, Marvel will reach more places according to the original article. Whether or not that means more countries is up to debate.
Retailers must start ordering from Hachette in July, and Hachette will release comics in September.
Marvel has been planning on leaving Diamond since they joined Diamond, at least that's how many retailers feel about it.
Staff
Posted by danhimself

I hope that Hachette doesn't take days off like Diamond does.  It may sound a little stupid but I hate when there's a holiday on a Monday and new books don't come out till Thursday that week.

Online
Posted by Lustwish

Im a DC reader, so its no skin off my teeth.  Maybe I will get my titles a little sooner and with better service.  More selection and more available with the likes of Image, IDW etc like they mentioned. 

Posted by xerox_kitty
@danhimself said:
" I hope that Hachette doesn't take days off like Diamond does.  It may sound a little stupid but I hate when there's a holiday on a Monday and new books don't come out till Thursday that week. "
Very true.  Personally, I just hope that they're not slow at shipping overseas.
Moderator
Posted by inferiorego
@Illuminarch said:
" Something doesn't compute between this article and the quoted source. Specifically:
 Diamond Comics Distributors will continue to distribute Marvel periodicals and books to the comic shop market.  If this is true, then there will be no difference to comic shop owners. My reading is that Hachette will be their distributor only to book stores, like Borders, B&N, and Amazon.   I was also surprised to hear a retailer complain about Diamond getting competition, since its virtual monopoly over comics distribution has been decried by a lot of shop owners since it first happened, since Diamond could dictate harder terms in the amount of money and amount and frequency of issues to be ordered. "
an update was just released about 20 minutes ago clarifying that. I'm updating the article as we speak.
Staff
Posted by sora_thekey
@xerox-kitty: Yeah I hope they start shipping across their south boarder
@inferiorego: Thanks!
Moderator
Posted by inferiorego

Updated

Staff
Posted by Lustwish
@danhimself:  I agree with half of that.  If the book is available on the date that it is supposed to be, then sure it will come out.  Books should be shipped ahead of time and pre-ordered by the retailer to accomadate the backup or delay.  However, even if a book is available say on a Monday, the retailer or comic book store will be closed regardless because it is a holiday.  If your trying to say that they should be prepared to have the books shipped ahead of time and arrive at the retailer for the day before so you can get them or for the day to follow, then absolutely, I agree.  But, If your saying that even tho there is a holiday that day and you should be able to get your books, then I don't agree with what your saying.  Thats why they call them holidays. 
Posted by danhimself
@Lustwish:  new comic book day is always on Wednesdays except for when their is a holiday earlier in the week....if their is a holiday on Monday then new comic books aren't released until Thursday
Online
Posted by doordoor123

diamond is going to be at C2E2 so let us hear what they have to say....ill ask whats up.