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Secret Wars #3 tops June 2015 comics sales; first half of year up 13%

Monday, July 6, 2015

by John Jackson Miller

http://bit.ly/CCSecWar3
The first half of 2015 is in the books, and comic books in particular put up some amazing numbers, according to data released on June sales by Diamond Comic Distributors. The comic book market continued to grow at a fast pace in June; its $48.7 million in sales meant that that the first half of 2015 was up nearly 13% over the first half of 2014. Comics retailers bought $282 million in comics, graphic novels, and magazines from Diamond in the first half of the year, an increase of more than $33 million over the same period in 2014.

According to Comichron and ICV2's 2014 sales report released last week, when bookstore, digital and other sales were added to Diamond's sales, last year saw overall North American sales of $935 million. Were the first half sales increase to persist and be seen across all categories, that would put the overall 2015 total north of $1 billion. That's never happened before, although when adjusted for inflation the market's peak year, 1993, likely approached $1.4 billion.

That said, the first half of 2014 was completely flat versus the year before it, so all the growth in 2014 happened in the second half. Comparatives are likely to get harder to beat as the year goes on.

The comparatives for the month:
  
DOLLARS UNITS
JUNE 2015 VS. MAY 2014
Comics -6.09% -5.33%
Graphic Novels 14.39% 23.02%
TOTAL -0.35% -3.30%
JUNE 2015 VS. JUNE 2014
Comics 16.34% 14.66%
Graphic Novels 18.03% 31.35%
TOTAL 16.88% 16.01%
YEAR-TO-DATE 2015 VS. YEAR-TO-DATE 2014
Comics 16.46% 16.52%
Graphic Novels 5.85% 4.06%
TOTAL 13.07% 15.46%
SECOND QUARTER 2015 VS. FIRST QUARTER 2015
Comics 19.03% 16.19%
Graphic Novels 24.63% 31.88%
TOTAL 20.67% 17.32%
SECOND QUARTER 2015 VS. FIRST QUARTER 2014
Comics 18.74% 19.01%
Graphic Novels 10.43% 16.71%
TOTAL 16.09% 18.82%

Marvel was again the market leader for the month, and unlike May there wasn't any major distortion to the shares coming from Loot Crate or other subscription box retailers: 

Market Shares 
Dollar share Unit share
Marvel 40.86% 43.16%
DC 25.06% 28.03%
Image 9.81% 10.83%
IDW 5.18% 3.86%
Dark Horse 4.25% 3.51%
Boom 1.93% 1.74%
Dynamite 1.83% 1.65%
Titan 1.26% 1.20%
Archie 0.96% 1.01%
Valiant 0.72% 0.82%
Other 8.13% 4.19%
Secret Wars #3 led the Top Ten charts, which included a number of debuts. Marvel and DC split the charts between them:

 Top 10 Comic Books 
Title Price Vendor
1 Secret Wars #3 $3.99 Marvel
2 Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #1 $3.99 Marvel
3 Star Wars #6 $3.99 Marvel
4 Justice League of America #1 $5.99 DC
5 Batman #41 $3.99 DC
6 Thors #1 $3.99 Marvel
7 Darth Vader #6 $3.99 Marvel
8 X-Men '92 #1 $4.99 Marvel
9 Justice League #41* $4.99 DC
10 Groot #1† $3.99 Marvel

(Update: The asterisk stands for the fact that Diamond reduced Justice League's orders slightly due to returnability. And it turns out that Groot was part of the Comic Block, a new subscription box offered by Nerd Block. It's unclear how many copies that would have added, though.)

Image's Wytches led a graphic novel list that was split between Marvel and Image. Graphic novels were up dramatically for the month; we'll have a better notion as to why when we see the rest of the Top 300:

Top 10 Graphic Novels and Trade Paperbacks   
Title PRICE VENDOR
1 Wytches Vol. 1 $9.99 Image
2 Thanos: The Infinity Relativity HC $24.99 Marvel
3 East of West Volume 4: Who Wants War $14.99 Image
4 Ms. Marvel Volume 3: Crushed $15.99 Marvel
5 Civil War $24.99 Marvel
6 Saga Vol. 1 $9.99 Image
7 Saga Vol. 4 $14.99 Image
8 House of Hem $7.99 Marvel
9 ODYC Vol. 1 $9.99 Image
10 Marvel Universe: Ant-Man Digest $9.99 Marvel
 
Comics publishers released 453 new comic books in June, versus 424 last June. They also released 288 new graphic novels, versus 246 last year. June 2014 also had four shipping weeks, so it's an even match-up.
New Items Released
Comics shipped Graphic novels shipped Magazines shipped Total shipped
Marvel 72 33 0 105
DC 68 25 1 94
Image 65 16 0 81
Dark Horse 32 31 0 63
IDW 41 21 0 62
Boom 31 10 0 41
Dynamite 27 5 0 32
Titan 10 7 2 19
Archie 14 2 0 16
Valiant 8 2 0 10
Other 85 136 36 257
TOTAL 453 288 39 780

The estimates for specific June 2015 comics should be out later this week.

 http://bit.ly/SWNewDawnJohn Jackson Miller has tracked the comics industry for more than 20 years, including a decade editing the industry's retail trade magazine; he is the author of several guides to comics, as well as more than a hundred comic books for various franchises. He is the author of several novels including Star Wars: Kenobi, Star Trek: The Next Generation - Takedown, and Star Wars: A New Dawn, now available in paperback.

Visit his fiction site at http://www.farawaypress.com. And be sure to follow Comichron on Twitter and Facebook.

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