(BALTIMORE, MD) — (February 3, 2009) — Diamond Comic Distributors is proud to announce the winners of the 2008 Diamond Gem Awards, recognized within the comic book industry as the pinnacle of sales achievement for comic book artists, writers, publishers, and industry executives who work in one of America’s most unique art forms.
“Congratulations to the 2008 Gem Award winners, which embody the best our industry has to offer,” said Diamond President and CEO Steve Geppi. “Representing the finest in pop-culture merchandise, the “Gemmies” are the retailer’s way of lauding companies and products that created the most consumer excitement for their businesses and impacted their bottom line over the past year.”
For the first time since 2002, Marvel Comics was named Comic Book Publisher of the Year, breaking DC Comics’ five year reign as the dominant supplier to the multi-million dollar comic book specialty market. DC Comics took home the most awards with eight, most notably winning Original Graphic Novel of the Year for The Joker Hardcover and Trade Paperback of the Year for perennial bestseller, The Watchmen TP.
“Marvel is grateful to its retail partners for recognizing the hard work and effort we put forth to not only excite the existing customer base with blockbuster comics like Secret Invasion and Dark Reign, but also to bring back previous readers who may have strayed from comics in times past, ,” said David Gabriel, Senior VP-Sales for Marvel Publishing. “We’re also thankful for the overwhelming support and acknowledgment of our successful endeavors to bring in new readers through the Best-Selling Authors line, Marvel Illustrated, and our Stephen King projects. Thank you for an incredible 2008 and we hope to continue to make 2009 an even better year for all of us!”
In accepting for DC Comics, Bob Wayne VP-Sales said, “It’s truly amazing to win eight Gem Awards. Everyone at DC is gratified by this show of support from the retail community, and we can’t wait to show you what’s coming up in 2009!”
The Gem Awards are selected in a three-step process that is based on quality, creativity, and their overall sales impact. Nominees were selected by a panel of Diamond industry professionals from all products shipped in 2008 and then voted on by the most critical segment that serves the comic book public—comic book specialty retailers across the U.S and abroad.
For a complete list of 2008 Diamond Gem Award winners and product photos visit www.diamondcomics.com/gemawards.
ABOUT DIAMOND COMIC DISTRIBUTORS—the world’s largest distributor of English-language comic books and pop-culture related merchandise—Diamond is based in Baltimore, MD, and services more than 4,000 specialty retailers worldwide. For more information, visit Diamond on the web at www.diamondcomics.com.