Since the establishment of the Premier Publisher status in 1996, no new companies have been advanced to Premier Status beyond the initial group of Acclaim (formerly known as Valiant – now defunct), Dark Horse, DC Comics, Image Comics and Marvel Comics.
That changed today as IDW has been promoted to Premier status and will now be appear in the monthly Diamond Previews magazine before Image Comics.
Yes, we realize that IDW is an American publisher, but I think this is relevant in that SIX JSA nominees this year produced outstanding work for IDW in 2009:
Darwyn Cooke (cartoonist) – Richard Stark’s Parker – The Hunter (and is presumably the publisher for future Parker adaptations by Cooke)
Kelley Armstrong (writer) – Angel 18-22 – reprinted as Angel Vol. 5: Aftermath (illustrated by Canadian artists Dave Ross and George Freeman)
Ty Templeton (writer) – Star Trek: Mission’s End 1-5 (illustrated by Canadian artist Steve Molnar)
Chris Chuckry (colourist) – G.I. Joe: Cobra #1-2
Lovern Kindzierski (colourist) – Angel #19 (written by Armstrong and illustrated by Ross and Freeman), Doctor Who #1-2, G.I. Joe: Cobra #3-4, G.I. Joe: Cobra Special #1, GrimJack: The Manx Cat #1, Star Trek: Crew #3-5, Star Trek: Romulans: Schism #1-3
Ronda Pattison (colourist) – Angel vs. Frankenstein (drawn by John Byrne)
IDW is also the home of the Captain Canuck hardcover reprints by Richard Comely, George Freeman and Claude St. Aubin. Hall of Famer John Byrne has found a home there as well, producing Star Trek comics.
Official Press Release
(BALTIMORE, MD) — (March 18, 2010) — Diamond Comic Distributors and IDW Publishing announced today that IDW has become the first publisher to advance to “premier” status since the classification was implemented in 1996. Diamond and IDW have signed a new, multi-year agreement that features a number of fresh initiatives, including premier status, in recognition of IDW’s success as a top tier comic book and graphic novel publisher. Under the agreement, Diamond will continue to be the exclusive distributor of IDW comic books and graphic novels to the comic book specialty market, and to the bookstore market through its Diamond Book Distributors division.
“This change recognizes the growth and importance of IDW Publishing,” said Diamond President and CEO, Steve Geppi, “and we look forward to working with them for many years to come.”
Diamond VP Purchasing Bill Schanes added, “Since IDW began publishing, they have grown consistently each and every year, while at the same time establishing one of the best editorial, marketing, and business teams in our industry. They’re easy to work with, understand our market, and are forging ahead with new strategies and plans to grow the consumer appetite for comics and graphic novels.”
In April, Diamond’s PREVIEWS catalog and PREVIEWSworld.com website will showcase IDW’s new vendor status as the company moves to the “Premier Comics” section. IDW will have an exclusive section in the front of the catalog each month, highlighting their new offerings to comic shop retailers and customers.
“We are very pleased to have completed this groundbreaking agreement with Diamond,” said Ted Adams, CEO of IDW Publishing. “By combining Diamond’s leadership in distribution with IDW’s ten-plus years in developing, creating and marketing comic books and graphic novels, we have created an ideal relationship for each of our companies. The comic book medium is trending upward in all parts of consumer awareness and we are proud to be a partner with Diamond for the future.”
Key points to the agreement include:
Under the new agreement and as a result of the company’s consistently strong market share, IDW will have premier status within Diamond and Diamond’s PREVIEWS, including an exclusive section at the front of the monthly catalog.
Discount and Terms of Sales
IDW Publishing will remain in a traditional buy/sell relationship with Diamond, with their books continuing to be sold to comic shops under Diamond’s Terms of Sale (unlike Diamond’s brokerage arrangement with publishers like Marvel and DC Comics where Diamond acts as a sales agent). Discounts will remain unchanged at this time.
Final Order Cut-Off
IDW will be added to Diamond’s Final Order Cut-Off Program sometime in the near future. “Since IDW is a traditional buy/sell vendor, we have some programming work to do, but we expect to have that finalized later this year,” said Schanes.
Book Market Distribution
Diamond remains the exclusive book market distributor of IDW’s publishing efforts. “We’re extremely proud of the progress we’ve made in helping IDW grow its sales in the book store market over the last five years,” said Diamond Book Distributors VP Sales & Marketing, Kuo-Yu Liang. “From their strong licensed properties to their successful launch last year of the Worthwhile Books line for kids, IDW has adeptly shown what products will sell into the book market channel.”
ABOUT DIAMOND COMIC DISTRIBUTORS—the world’s largest distributor of English-language comic books and pop-culture related merchandise—Diamond is based in Baltimore, MD, and services more than 3,500 specialty retailers worldwide. For more information, visit Diamond on the web at http://www.diamondcomics.com.
ABOUT IDW PUBLISHING— IDW is an award-winning publisher of comic books, graphic novels and trade paperbacks, based in San Diego, California. Renowned for its diverse catalog of licensed and independent titles, IDW publishes some of the most successful and popular titles in the industry, including: Hasbro’s The Transformers and G.I. JOE, Paramount’s Star Trek; Fox’s Angel; the BBC’s Doctor Who; and television’s #1 prime time series CBS’ CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. IDW is also home to the Library of American Comics imprint, which publishes classic comic reprints; Yoe! Books, a partnership with Yoe! Studios; and is the print publisher for ComicMix. IDW’s original horror series, 30 Days of Night, was launched as a major motion picture in October 2007 by Sony Pictures and was the #1 film in its first week of release. More information about the company can be found at IDWPublishing.com.