Even as Diane Nelson arrives for some quality time at the DC offices this week, over the weekend people were asking the Big Questions. Graeme McMillan ponders the nuclear/Diamond option:
(One worry outside of Warners taking a stronger hand in DC’s creative decisions – and perhaps a more important worry to the comic book industry as a whole – is that DC Comics still has an option to purchase Diamond Distributors, which has been the case since the implosion of the comic market in the mid-1990s. Diamond, now essentially a monopoly in terms of distribution to comic book stores internationally, is the speciality comic book market; whereas before Levitz was said to be the moral voice stopping any such sale from taking place, without Levitz and with Warners looking to make DC Entertainment a profitable company, what’s to stop DC from buying Diamond now – especially as doing so would allow them to control the distribution of Marvel Comics?)
The Beat says: Warners has shown very little inclination to own distribution companies in recent years, having divested from Time Warner Cable, AOL, and Warner Books, their existing distribution company (now owned by Hachette). So, buying a specialty magazine distributor would be…a daring move.
§ ICv2 interviews Nelson and Paul Levitz on their press tour, and asks what people are really wondering about:
We assume the headquarters of DC Entertainment will be in the Los Angeles area. Are there any plans to consolidate, to move publishing to California?
Nelson: Our focus is going to be figuring out how we integrate DC Comics and DC Entertainment into Warner Bros. and we’re going to spend a lot of time with Paul’s guidance and my thoughts understanding the business and how we do that best for the future, so there really aren’t any plans to do any of the specific things you just asked.
Nelson is also questioned about the Direct Market:
Nelson: This is an area that first of all, admittedly, I have a lot more to learn about. I also am very aware that in my colleague Paul I have someone who understands that channel better than almost anyone. My focus is going to necessarily need to be how do we protect the core business and by extension the retailers who are the foundation of that, while also looking to build and grow the business for the future. I certainly appreciate the cultural and business value that those stores, their owners, and their customers provide for this whole business. And what that looks like for the future is going to take a whole lot of conversation with lots of people, not the least of whom is Paul.