The Beat has learned that last week Archie Comics laid off five employees from their 30 person staff.
Archie did not respond to enquiries.
Earlier this year Archie launched a Kickstarter that sought $350,000 to help fund it’s updated Archie line that includes Archie #1 by Mark Waid and Fiona Staples. After a a firestorm of controversy, it was cancelled shortly later.
Archie #1 has been a sales success, with 101,488 copies of the but ordered, according to ICv2, and 30,642 sold of the second issue. It’s a steep drop but still above what the usual Archie comic sells.
The Archie downsizing is just one sign of a market correction that seems to be taking place at several companies. The Beat will have more coverage of these signs but in the meantime you might want to check out Todd Allen’s Four Risk Factors Facing the Comics Industry in 2015, which lays out why we’re seeing some of these corrections. It’s not the end of the world or the end of comics, but just the logical follow-up to what has been a fairly tumultuous year.