As multiple comics publishers are partnering with Penguin Random Publisher Services for Direct Market distribution of physical single-issue comic books and graphic novels, some are also partnering with digital comics distributor GlobalComix, which allows users to download full PDFs of comics from both major publishers (like Top Cow and Valiant), and independent creators. Once readers have acquired these PDFs, they have full control of them, which is a massive shift from other digital platforms where even purchasing comics only allows readers to see the files in-app.
Now, GlobalComix is shaking up the comics scene once again by getting into the physical market - but not in the traditional way.
GlobalComix has announced it will partner with Source Point Press parent company Ox Eye Media starting in 2023 to form GC Press, an on-demand comics printing service. This will be the first of its kind in the comics industry, allowing readers to purchase any comic in physical form (regardless of retail availability) and have it shipped directly to them, anywhere in the world.
"The GlobalComix vision has and always will be to give creators all the tools they need to succeed and build their business around," GlobalComix CEO and founder Christopher Carter says in the announcement. "With GC Press, we are opening up access to both buying and selling printed comics for tens of thousands of creators worldwide that otherwise would have limited to no options in reaching fans who enjoy and collect print comics."
Not only will this allow international comics readers to purchase either digital or physical editions of comics they might not otherwise be able to access, but it will allow fans to acquire out-of-print comics more easily and potentially for a lower price point.
Plus, comics not available in stores but through the GlobalComix service can also be printed to order. Any creator on the GlobalComix platform can make their comics available for print, without having to fund (or crowdfund) a print run themselves.
"At the earliest formation of Source Point I think a core value was to be in service to creators," Ox Eye Media CEO Travis McIntire says.
"For nearly a decade, growing our business at conventions and events to mass market distribution, we've tried to maintain our focus on helping creators get their books into the hands of readers. This partnership with GlobalComix is a natural next step for us. Being able to help connect new readers with new creators is something that's great for our hobby and excellent for our industry as a whole."
Offering print-on-demand comics will expand an already robust toolbelt provided for creators at GlobalComix. These include donations, e-commerce, and subscription revenue models with real-time analytics and operations management.
Readers can acquire full PDFs for their GlobalComix library and read them on the website or download them to read elsewhere, on any device. They can even send these PDFs to others.
"Both of our companies have clear strengths that we've proven through years of work, in completely separate areas of the comics value chain," says GlobalComix head of business development Eric Tapper. "We realized that by working together, we could unify digital and print and push the industry forward, making it a better deal for both creators and readers."
Select Source Point Press titles will be the first available for both digital and physical purchasing through GC Press, and the company will roll out a broader selection throughout 2023.
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