Diamond Comic Distributors this morning provided retailers with details of its day-early delivery program, which will enable direct-market stores in North America and the United Kingdom to receive comics on Tuesday for sale on Wednesday.
The release day for new comics will continue to be Wednesday in North America, but will move from Thursday to Wednesday in the United Kingdom.
Announced in late August following public discussion at the Diamond Retailer Summit at the Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo and a formal survey, the program will take effect with shipments delivered on Jan. 11 for sale on Jan. 12. Retailers have until Oct. 25 to notify Diamond whether they plan to participate.
Store owners in North America who opt for Tuesday delivery will be charged $4 a week to fund a mystery shopper program to help ensure Wednesday street dates aren’t broken. Retailers who are found to be violating street dates will lose early delivery for one month for their first offense, three months for their second, and indefinitely for their third.
Read part of the official announcement below:
As announced in August, following extensive internal consideration, significant consultation with leading publishers and retailers earlier this year, public discussion at Diamond’s April Retailer Summit, a comprehensive Retailer Survey that drew over 1000 responses, and recent follow-up discussions with publishers and retailers, the industry has spoken: Starting in January, 2011, retailers will have the option of receiving Day-Early (Tuesday) Delivery of their weekly comic shipments or of continuing to receive Wednesday delivery.
• The release day for new comics will continue to be Wednesday in the U.S. and Canada, and will move from Thursday to Wednesday in the UK.
• Retailers have until Monday, October 25, 2010 to notify Diamond of whether or not they want to participate in the Day-Early Delivery program.
“Day-Early Delivery is a direct result of the cooperation and flexibility of our industry’s leading publishers, and feedback from specific customers and the retail community as a whole,” said Diamond Vice President of Sales & Marketing Roger Fletcher. “We’ve worked to present a balanced view of the potential benefits and drawbacks of Day-Early Delivery and we’re very happy that a strong consensus to move forward has emerged.”
“Day-Early Delivery is a significant undertaking for all involved,” added Diamond Vice President of Purchasing Bill Schanes. “It required the agreement of our premier publishers, who have to work with their creative and production teams as well as their printers to rearrange their publishing schedules. In addition, like Diamond, these publishers will absorb some negative cash flow to make this option available. Printers, in turn, will be adjusting their printing and shipping schedules. We thank both of these important partners for helping us make this option available to our customers.”
“Working out the details of Day-Early Delivery has posed several logistical challenges, which our Distribution Center staffs are eager to meet” said Diamond Vice President of Operations Cindy Fournier. “While it requires rearranging our work schedules, and some more expensive weekend work hours, we know how beneficial this new service can be for our customers, and we are committed to its success.”