Diamond Comics announced they won’t be able to pay publishers in full until at least August.
In an email to comic book publishers, founder, chairman, and CEO of Geppi Family Enterprises Steve Geppi outlined a plan to pay publishers following their announcement that they would no longer be distributing new comics due to the coronavirus.
Diamond Comics’ New Payment Plan
The email shared to social media by Alterna Comics founder Peter Simeti details that Diamond Comics will begin paying publishers and other vendors 25% of what they are owed under their contracts beginning the week of April 6, 2020.
They will then pay publishers and other vendors 25% of what they are owed each subsequent week for the next six weeks.
Diamond Comics then details they will begin paying the rest of the amount that was deferred in payments over a 13-week period.
That means publishers and vendors won’t see their full payments from Diamond Comics until late August.
Here’s their full action plan:
- Beginning this week, the week of April 6th, you will receive 25% of the weekly amount due under your contract terms
- 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
An update from Diamond regarding payments to vendors & suppliers.
Looks like we need to hunker down for 5 months till payments are received in full. Right.
No word still on the cancellation or adjustment of prior or future purchase orders or a timetable on receiving new items. pic.twitter.com/FpN81qBUHD
— Peter Simeti 💬 (@petersimeti) April 6, 2020
This new plan comes after they had previously announced they would be putting a hold on payments to their vendors and publishers.
Diamond Comics Announces Leadership Paycuts
Not only does the update detail that they won’t be able to pay publishers and vendors in full until at least August, but Geppi details that Diamond Comics leadership is taking paycuts.
Geppi writes, “While we understand that this will have 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, and various other providers of professional services have agreed to defer their payments.”
Geppi concludes, “Never before have we experienced such a test of our resolve and 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.”
Donny Cates Pleas For Hollywood To Pay Rent For Local Comic Shops
The comic book publishing industry looks to be in extreme dire straits as it appears that Diamond might not have been able to pay rent on the buildings given they admit they negotiated deferments on the rent that it uses to do business due to their decision to shut down shipping.
It’s in such dire straits that Marvel Comics writer Donny Cates has petitioned Hollywood celebrities to help the industry out.
Cates wrote on Twitter, “It would be pretty amazing if even ONE of the actors who became a multi-MULTI-millionaires would give a little something back to help the shops and creators who enabled them to have their lives. #JustSaying.”
It would be pretty amazing if even ONE of the actors who became a multi-MULTI-millionaires would give a little something back to help the shops and creators who enabled them to have their lives. #JustSaying
— DONNY⚡️CATES (@Doncates) April 1, 2020
Less than a year ago Cates suggested there was nothing wrong with the comics industry.
Sincerely. Relax man. I work in the industry and have for a long time. We’re doing fine. I promise. People have been saying comics were dying since there have been comics. It’s all okay.
— DONNY⚡️CATES (@Doncates) July 4, 2019
However, as Alterna Comics founder Peter Simeti suggests, the comics industry put itself in this position.
When publishers signed exclusive distribution agreements and decided to turn their back on being proactive and having comics out in the world — they turned their back on readers and creators.
Lack of sales volume hurts creators and it puts a drain on readers.
— Peter Simeti 💬 (@petersimeti) April 3, 2020
Regardless of where the blame currently lies for the current struggles of the comic book industry, fellow creator Cully Hammer suggested a DC Comics or Marvel Comics actor adopt a comic book shop and pay their rent for 6 months.
Hammer wrote, “Like if any of the main actors and/or directors of the Big Two comics movies “adopted” a comics retailer and paid rent for 6 months to a year? That would be cool…”
Like if any of the main actors and/or directors of the Big Two comics movies “adopted” a comics retailer and paid their rent for 6 months to a year? Would be cool…
— Cully Hamner (@CullyHamner) April 2, 2020
Cates has also offered up the idea of fellow comic book creators purchasing art commissions from artists who might be struggling due to Diamond Comics’ decision to stop shipping new comic books.
And I’ll just say this here too. Not calling anyone out, but if you’re a fellow pro who can afford to do this: you should.
Even a little 50 to 100 dollar commission can help folks right now. We have to help each other. https://t.co/F3KLtupKwM
— DONNY⚡️CATES (@Doncates) April 5, 2020
Ethan Van Sciver Wants To Rebuild The Comic Book Industry
Cyberfrog creator Ethan Van Sciver believes the current iteration of the comic book industry “needs to go away” calling the industry as it currently is a “corrupt and unprofitable system run by people who hated their customers.”
He then notes that he’s working on rebuilding the comic book industry saying, “You’re here at the ground floor!”
It was a corrupt and unprofitable system run by people who hated their customers. It needs to go away for comics to be reborn. You’re here at the ground floor!
— ComicArtistPro Secrets (@EthanVanSciver) April 3, 2020
What do you make of Steve Geppi’s latest comments? Do you think the comic book industry as it currently stands will survive?