Diamond responds to Marvel choosing Penguin Random House as its new distributor

Diamond Comic Distributors
(Image credit: Diamond Comic Distributors)

Diamond Comic Distributors chairman, president & CEO Steve Geppi has released a statement responding to the news Marvel Comics has entered a new exclusive agreement with Penguin Random House to be its distributor to the comic book Direct Market beginning October 1, 2021. 

"We value our almost 40-year relationship with Marvel and are pleased that we will continue selling Marvel products to the Direct Market and other channels," the statement reads. 

"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. I expect the discount terms under which our retail partners order these Marvel products to change, and Diamond will communicate that information to our customers well in advance of any adjustments. While there are still details of this new arrangement to work through, 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."

Marvel's deal with Penguin Random House makes it the comic book Direct Market's exclusive distributor of Marvel comic books and collections. Diamond, however, can continue to act as a wholesaler to Direct Market retailers, fulfilling their orders through their existing distribution apparatus. However, Diamond would now be ordering Marvel products through Penguin Random House, and not Marvel Comics directly.

Diamond Comic Distributors has been the primary, and often only regular distributor of Direct Market comic books since 1997, with Marvel, DC, Image, and most other major publishers sticking with Diamond for years (Dark Horse being a notable exception).

In late March and early April of 2020, the comic book industry underwent publishing and distribution interruptions due to the ongoing COVD-19 pandemic, with Diamond shuttering its operations entirely from March 23, 2020, through June 2020.

The shutdown led to and/or coincided with DC seeking out new distribution. The publisher moved to a pair of newly founded distributors before settling on the current Lunar Distributors.

Look for more information on this story throughout the week as it develops. 

Marvel's digital distribution appears unchanged. Check out our list of the best digital comics readers for Android and iOS devices.

Marvel's digital distribution appears unchanged. Check out our list of the best digital comics readers for Android and iOS devices.

I'm not just the Newsarama founder and editor-in-chief, I'm also a reader. And that reference is just a little bit older than the beginning of my Newsarama journey. I founded what would become the comic book news site in 1996, and except for a brief sojourn at Marvel Comics as its marketing and communications manager in 2003, I've been writing about new comic book titles, creative changes, and occasionally offering my perspective on important industry events and developments for the 25 years since. Despite many changes to Newsarama, my passion for the medium of comic books and the characters makes the last quarter-century (it's crazy to see that in writing) time spent doing what I love most.