In a significant move, Image Comics has announced a major distribution deal with Simon & Schuster, set to take effect from January 2024 for all on-sale titles in the North American market. The deal will see Image Comics join the ranks of Viz Media, Boom Studios, and other graphic novel publishers on Simon & Schuster’s esteemed client list, signaling a new chapter for the renowned comic book publisher.
Previously, Image Comics enjoyed an exclusive partnership with Diamond Book Distributors, which played a crucial role in establishing a strong presence for their trade paperbacks and graphic novels in the book market over the past two decades. However, as Image Comics’ needs and backlist of titles have expanded, and with their increasing prominence in the marketplace, the company has decided to take this strategic step forward with Simon & Schuster. The move is intended to build a more robust infrastructure for their titles within North America.
Eric Stephenson, Publisher at Image Comics, expressed gratitude for the support and efforts of Diamond Book Distributors in their journey so far. He emphasized that their growth and broader reach have fueled the excitement to partner with Simon & Schuster, heralding a new era for the publisher’s presence in the book market.
“We are delighted to welcome Image Comics to our family of distribution clients,” stated Michael Perlman, Senior Vice President, General Manager of Simon & Schuster Publisher Services. Perlman expressed the company’s eagerness to collaborate with Image Comics, ensuring that their captivating graphic novels reach readers across North America.
Simon & Schuster’s comprehensive suite of distribution services offers numerous advantages to independent and client publishers. From sales and fulfillment to production and digital support services, Image Comics will gain access to a robust infrastructure that will enable them to extend their reach and engage with a broader audience.
It’s important to clarify that this new partnership exclusively pertains to the “Book Market,” which includes well-known chain bookstores like Barnes & Noble, Indigo, Books-a-Million, Amazon, independent bookstores, libraries, and non-comic shop brick-and-mortar and online retailers. Image Comics’ other distribution channels, namely the “Direct Market”/comic shop distribution serviced by Lunar Distribution and the Digital/ebook distribution handled by IPG, remain unaffected by this development.
With this strategic move, Image Comics is positioning itself to strengthen its presence in the North American book market, ensuring that its exceptional graphic novels find their way into the hands of even more enthusiastic readers. The partnership with Simon & Schuster is set to open up new possibilities and create exciting opportunities for both parties involved. As we approach January 2024, anticipation is building in the comic book community to witness the fruits of this collaboration.