In our ongoing coverage of shops commenting on the state of the market for 2017, we told you about Mission Comics and Art in San Francisco having a $72K sales dip in 2017.  That’s not a good number and Mission owner Leef Smith got a little more blunt about it’s implications yesterday.

Mission: Comics is in SERIOUS danger of having to close!
Sales in 2017 dropped by about 17% or about $72,000!
I’ve been sharing some of the details on the website at

If you want to see the store survive PLEASE come to this meeting to help figure out next steps!

Mission Comics and Art is having an “Emergency Community Meeting” on Sunday at 6PM to discuss possible next steps.

This is not without precedent in San Francisco.  Back in 2015, the science fiction bookstore, Borderland Books, was considering closing.  They had a similar sort of town hall with their alarmed customers and it was decided the store would sell a sponsorship program, rather than close.  300 people signed up and disaster was averted.  Then in the Fall, 49 of those patrons arranged to lend the store $1.9 million so a new building could be purchased.   Which is a helluva way to not have any more lease problems, though that may be a different set of circumstances.

Want to learn more about how comics publishing and digital comics work?  Try Todd’s book, Economics of Digital Comics


  1. SF’s ultra-high minimum wage laws are going to kill a lot more businesses like this – and a lot of jobs are going to go.

  2. That’s a pretty interesting assumption Bob. There’s a lot more to the picture with any retail operation.

  3. There’s so much more to the analysis here.
    What does the retailer do to reach beyond the door, beyond the current customer base?
    How does the retailer find new audiences?
    What sort of marketing and advertising does the retailer commit to?
    What sort of local and community partnerships does the retailer have?
    What sort of inventory is the retailer holding?
    What are the distribution resources available to the retailer?
    How does staffing interact with established customers?
    How does the staffing interact with new customers?
    What sort of environment does the customer encounter?
    How is the inventory presented or displayed?

    Here is where a comics retailer is no different than a standard bookseller, or any other kind of specialty retailer. If you dont know the answers to those questions then it is way too easy to blame targets like Marvel or DC or even Diamond.

Comments are closed.