Graphic novels sales up in ’08

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ICv2 has a condensed version of the white paper presented at yesterday’s conference, and graphic novels sales were UP in ’08, from $375 million in 2007 to $395 million in 2008. Sales rose four percent in comics shops and six percent in bookstores. Elsewhere:

After years of growth, manga sales actually contracted in 2008, dropping from $210 million in 2007 to $175 million (roughly 2005 numbers), with larger declines in the bookstores than in the comic shops. Reduced exposure of manga-related anime series on the Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim played a role, but there were other factors as well. The economic downturn in the second half of the year appears to have had a greater effect on bookstores, and the wildly popular Twilight novels of Stephenie Meyer occupied much of the attention of the young tween and teen female demographic that has been behind manga’s explosive growth in the bookstore market.

Sales of periodical comics declined from $330 million in 2007 to $320 million in 2008 as the major comic events from the big publishers were almost, but not quite, able to match the sterling success that Civil War and 52 had attained in 2007. But comics and graphic novels taken together grew from $705 million in 2007 to $715 million in 2008. If flat is the new up, comics and graphic novels had a very good year in 2008.


$10 million is a small amount, especially when inflation is taken into account, but up is up.

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