Date: 2005 April 08 07:39
Posted by Joe
Following on from our story about Viz being distributed in the UK, we now have the offical press release from Gollancz.
Press release as follows:
GOLLANCZ ANNOUNCES MANGA DEAL
London: Gollancz, part of the Orion Publishing Group, today announced a major new imprint, Gollancz Manga.
Gollancz has entered into an exclusive arrangement with San Francisco-based publisher VIZ to publish their Manga series in the UK. VIZ is one of the top five comics publishers in the U.S. and a subsidiary of Shogakukan and Shueisha Inc., two of the top publishers in Japan.
The publishing programme will kick off on August 11, 2005 and is the first of its kind in the UK. The deal was negotiated on VIZ’s behalf by Sophie Hicks at Ed Victor Ltd, together with Chigusa Ogino at the Tuttle Mori Agency in Tokyo. The Gollancz Manga editions will be sublicenses of VIZ’s editions, from and limited to Shonen Jump and Shogakukan titles in Japan, originally published in the USA.
Previously only available as expensive imports from specialist outlets, the Orion deal will see Manga properly published and distributed in the UK for the first time with 30 titles across four series being released over the first 12 months. The new titles will cost £4.99 each, £2 less than the imported versions, which will make them a massive draw for children and collectors alike.
Four series will be launched in August: "Dragon Ball", "Yu-Gi-Oh!", "Case Closed" and "Fushigi Yugi".
Malcolm Edwards, Deputy Chief Executive and Publisher of the Orion Publishing Group, said of the deal: "Manga is becoming a world wide publishing phenomenon, and we are delighted that Gollancz has been chosen by VIZ to be their UK partner."
Manga is a world wide multi-billion dollar industry that has spawned card trading games, movies, animated series, toys and computer games. Gollancz Manga will be taking it mainstream in the UK and for the first time the books will be available at a vastly cheaper price and on a regular basis.
"Case Closed" has sold 20 million copies in 20 countries, and in Japan alone it has sold 100 million copies. "Dragon Ball" has sold over 85 million copies in 24 countries, and has sold 130 million copies in Japan. The Dragon Ball cartoon has aired in 92 countries around the world. The "Yu-Gi-Oh!" series has developed into an industry estimated to be worth £1 billion annually and includes action figures, Trading card games and video games.