The comics distribution wars are still going strong. Marvel Comics announced today a new exclusive book market distribution deal with Penguin Random House Publisher Services. The deal will see PRHPS exclusively distribute Marvel collected editions and graphic novels to the bookstore market. The publisher’s titles have previously been distributed to bookstores by Hachette since 2010.
The announcement comes over a year after Marvel announced they would be shifting their direct market distribution for single issue comics and graphic novels from Diamond to Penguin Random House. Diamond has continued to carry Marvel titles as a wholesaler, and this new deal for the bookstore market likely won’t impact that.
Penguin Random House has already been the book market distributor for a number of other comics publishers, including DC Comics, Dark Horse Comics, Archie Comics, IDW, and Kodansha. The Marvel announcement today consolidates all primary distribution for Marvel Comics titles – both in the book market and in the direct market – at PRH, making them the first publisher to do so. Will more follow?
PRH Publisher Services will take over exclusive bookstore distribution of Marvel Comics titles beginning April 1st, 2023, with Hachette continuing bookstore distribution of Marvel collections and graphic novels until then.