On Saturday afternoon, DC Entertainment finally released a statement to retailers about their plans to deal with the ongoing Coronavirus crisis. While brief, the statement alludes to more details to be announced on a potential “multi-distributor model to provide us with the flexibility needed.” With Diamond Distribution currently not shipping new product, this could have a huge ripple effect.
For now, all periodical shipping up to June 24 will be fully returnable. DC’s printer is currently shut down, so they would need to find an alternative for production as well.
The statement comes amid ongoing speculation that DC will be exploring digital distribution for the period when physical comics will not be available from Diamond – and I’m hearing this move was confirmed to retailers.
While other publishers have announced they will not make digital comics available for comics that are not available in print, DC seems to be going ahead to get the comics out.
ComiXology, the primary digital distribution channel has not made any statements about what will be available on April 1, however I’m told that they only sell what publishers give them to sell, and it’s up to the individual publishers to decide what will be available.
DC’s statement is below.
To Direct Market Retailers:
First, the entire team here at DC hopes that you, your family and your employees are staying safe and healthy during this very tough and precarious time. We know that you have been waiting for DC to comment on the state-of-affairs and to address any measures we will take to help our community lighten the burden of the disruption to our business, and we’ve been working hard on a long-term, solution-focused plan. Here is how we will help:
Periodicals and books with in-store dates between March 18, 2020 and June 24, 2020 will be fully returnable. We’ll even provide credit for your separate return shipping of these items only.
Additionally, because we anticipate that continued disruption to business operations will create regional volatility, DC is exploring a multi-distributor model to provide us with the flexibility needed during this crisis to get new content to our readers on an ongoing basis. In the short-term, we continue to engage in active conversations with Diamond to help us solve the distribution issues that have arisen and hope to get new product to stores that want or need it as soon as possible. We will provide additional information about how we’ll make that happen in the coming days.
Thanks for your patience with us. DC will continue to monitor the situation, continue to speak with you directly, and continue to support you through the days ahead. You are the lifeblood of this industry.
The DC Team