DC Comics Announces New Distribution Model

DC Comics has altered their schedule in response to the Coronavirus pandemic, reports Newsarama.

This came in response to Diamond Comics Distributors, Inc, the leading distributor in the comics industry, shutting down their operations until mid-to-late May in response to the pandemic.

As part of their announcement, DC has created an agreement with two mail-order comic book stores: Lunar Distribution and UCS Comic Distributors.

Per the article, “To assist with the immediate distribution of DC titles during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, we’ve secured the assistance of two distributors to help facilitate orders of and shipping of our revised publishing schedule,” DC told retailers in an email Friday afternoon. “Lunar Distribution and UCS Comic Distributors have agreed to work with us to distribute these new comics.”

Lunar Distribution and UCS Distributors are sister companies to Discount Comic Book Service and Midtown Comics, two large presences in the mail-order realm. Midtown overseas DC’s subscription wing.

Newsarama is also reporting that any books that were to be released between April 1st through April 15th were canceled, telling stores to re-submit their orders through the new distributors.

They add “To that end, instead of simply ‘lifting and shifting’ the same scheduled titles for each of the missed in-store dates, we’ve made changes to the publishing schedule,” DC explained in the letter to retailers. “The new schedule is designed to allow each of you to begin ordering a limited amount of DC product at first, and then ease back into the number of books that represents a normal release schedule from DC when your business can accommodate it.”

This shift have also caused DC to change their traditional comic book release day from Wednesdays to Tuesdays, to even up their release pattern.

In order for retailers to receive their orders in a timely fashion, DC has instructed them to choose the distributors closest to them. To keep up with the orders, the current U.S. distribution model is being divided into a simple East and West fashion, however, on-time distribution outside of the U.S. is not a guarantee as of this time.

Lunar will be handling distribution to the shops in “Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Mexico, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. They are also handling distribution to the Canadian provinces of Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario, and Saskatchewan.”

UCS will be working on delivery to “Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, Vermont, West Virgina, and the District of Columbia. The Canadian provinces they’re taking point on are New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Labrador, Nova Scotia, and Quebec.”

Any comic shops outside of the places listed above have been instructed to contact UCS, Lunar and Diamond directly.

Lastly, DC has instructed retailers that they can still order from Diamond, as long as the orders are based within Diamond’s distribution time frame, and any discounts they had with Diamond will still be in effect through UCS and Lunar.

Collectibles will not be handled by UCS or Lunar.

For more articles related to how the Coronavirus is affecting the comics industry, click here.

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