Last month, Bleeding Cool reported the news that Marvel Comics was moving its exclusive direct market business to Penguin Random House and away from Diamond Comic Distributors. Although retailers could still order through Diamond, as a wholesale customer of Penguin Random House. We also had 52 questions asked and answered by Penguin Random House to potential comic book retailers. The headlines seemed to be free shipping, a standard 50% discount level for retailers, a specific warehouse for comic book distribution (half an hour away from Diamond Comic Distributors' own big warehouse) and assigned sales reps for all comic book stores. And we had plenty more thoughts to follow as well.
Since then, Bleeding Cool has been told by comic book stores that Diamond Comic Distributors have been quizzing them on whether they will stick with Diamond or move to PRH, as well as suggesting they may also be moving to free shipping.
But Penguin Random House may have something else to offer aside from free shipping and familiar customer service representatives. And that's NET 60 payments. Basically, comic cook stores only have to pay for comic books received 60 days after they receive them. As it stands, some comic book stores have to pay in advance for comics from Diamond, or pay cash-on-delivery. Arranging credit terms can be long and arduous for some, having to show years and years of reliable business to get better terms. But with PRH? It's NET 60 payments from the get-go.
If Diamond Comic Distributors is going to present an effective challenge to Penguin Random House for the distribution of Marvel Comics titles, this is going to have to be something else to counter. Free shipping, customer service reps for all and NET 60. These seem to be the three points of contention going forward.
We'll keep an ear out for any more.