Over the weekend, Bleeding Cool reported that Marvel Comics had agreed to extend terms to Diamond Comic Distributors. This meant that Marvel didn't demand payment from Diamond as usual, as Diamond closed its doors to new products because of the coronavirus pandemic. Diamond also allowed comic book stores to put their own accounts with Diamond on hold as well. We also mentioned Diamond had made redundancies at the company as well. Stan Heidmann, President of Diamond owners Geppi Family Enterprises, has now issued the following message to comic book publishers who distribute through Diamond and it's not good news. Heidmann writes that Diamond Comic Distributors will not be able to pay comics publishers, and other suppliers, this week as planned.
Dear Diamond Vendor:
As the world responds to the outbreak of COVID-19, our focus is on protecting employees, understanding the risks to our business, evaluating the risks to our industry and examining the Federal Government resources available. While the full impact of this epidemic is still unknown, one thing is certain: supply chain disruptions have cash flow implications across the extended industry that can't be underestimated.
While we work to understand the current industry landscape, the unfortunate truth is that we are no longer receiving consistent payments from our customers. This requires that at this time, we hold payments to vendors previously scheduled to release this week. This is a difficult decision and not one we make lightly. As this situation continues to evolve, we are committed to building out a plan for payment and will have more information to share later this week.
Thank you for your patience and understanding during these difficult times.
Maybe it's worth making a call to Penguin Random House after all? Some publishers will be able to weather such a payment delay, but others will not, especially with all sorts of other changes to their cash flow. These are hard times for everyone. Bleeding Cool will continue to report on the effect that the coronavirus pandemic is having on the comics industry and you can follow along with this link.