Steve Geppi is the Founder, Chairman & CEO of Geppi Family Enterprises. He is also the owner of Diamond Comic Distributors. Two weeks ago Diamond closed its doors to new comics as part of the current global situation. They also made redundancies. Last week, Diamond told publishers that they would cease payment for product received. This happened while Diamond simultaneously demanded payments from retailers, many of whom have also closed. Bleeding Cool hears about publishers that may have to close down entirely as a result.
Diamond Changes Payment Terms
Today, Geppi reached out to publishers to promise a schedule of payment. He writes, "working with what we know today. Below is the outline of vendor payments from Diamond Comic Distributors and Diamond Book Distributors. Beginning this week, the week of April 6th, you will receive 25% of the weekly amount due under your contract term. Each subsequent week, you will receive a 25% payment of that week's balance due. This reduced payment schedule will continue for 6 weeks. With the remaining 75% due in each of those weeks being deferred. Following that 6-week period, we will begin payment of the deferred balance in equal payments over a 13-week period."
"We understand that this will have a significant impact on everyone, and the situation could change. We also recognize that our world is in the midst of an unprecedented crisis and aggressive action is necessary. In addition to the steps outlined above, our leadership team is accepting a 50% salary cut. Landlords have agreed to rent deferrals. Various other providers of professional services have agreed to defer their payments. Never before have we experienced such a test of our resolve and a demonstration of our commitment to each other."
"Now more than ever we need to come together in support of one another. Knowing that these difficult decisions will allow us to emerge from this trying time and thrive once again." One publisher describes the current situation at Diamond to Bleeding Cool as their comics being "held hostage". This is likely to be a step in the right direction for them, but at the moment is just a quarter step.