Today, Marvel Comics announced a multi-year, exclusive sales and distribution deal with Penguin Random House Publisher Services (PRHPS) for its newly published and backlist comic books, trade collections, and graphic novels.
Effective on Oct. 1, this deal means that PRHPS will distribute Marvel titles to local comic shops (aka the Direct Market). For those who may not be familiar with the business side of comics, PRHPS already distributes Archie comics, graphic novels from DC Comics, and books from IDW Publishing.
Under this arrangement, PRHPS will sell Marvel titles to Diamond Comic Distributors (the current Marvel Comics distributor) wholesale, so comic book shops can choose to continue ordering through Diamond or begin ordering directly from PRHPS. In a statement published in Comics Beat, Diamond Comic Distributors President Steve Geppi said, “The change Marvel announced today represents a behind-the-scenes shift in how Diamond interacts with Marvel for certain products, but does not impact our ability to supply our customers with Marvel comics, trades, and graphic novels. … My leadership team and I are committed to making this supply change as operationally seamless as possible for our retail partners and we look forward to our continued distribution of Marvel products.” Still, this shift is significant for the industry, following DC Comics’ departure from Diamond Comic Distributors last year.
At this time, Hachette Book Group will still manage the distribution of Marvel’s graphic novels and trade collections to the book market.
The full announcement about this distribution agreement is available on marvel.com.