Multiple sources have confirmed to ICv2 that Marvel is moving from Diamond to CDS for book distribution, as rumored last month (see 'LPC Deal Getting Close'). While Diamond VP Roger Fletcher's response to a request for comment was, 'We don't comment on rumors,' based on what we are hearing from others, it appears that a formal announcement will be coming soon.
CDS formerly performed logistics and collection services for LPC; it is now adding management and sales staff from LPC and competing directly for LPC's former graphic novel publishing clients, as well as clients serviced by other book distributors (as Marvel was). Diamond recently formed a new division, headed by seasoned book management, to do the same (see 'Diamond Forms New Book Division').
Marvel represents the second of the largest graphic novel publishers in play to make a decision; Tokyopop was the first (see 'Tokyopop Selects CDS for Book Distribution'). Still in play is Dark Horse, a bookstore powerhouse with its Star Wars franchise and manga trade paperback bestsellers (Akira, Lone Wolf). Dark Horse VP Michael Martens told ICv2 today that the candidates had been narrowed to Diamond and CDS, and that a decision is expected soon. Other significant graphic novel publishers such as Image also have yet to make a decision.
The loss of Marvel leaves Diamond with an extensive roster of smaller publishers (see 'Diamond Signs Three More for Bookstores'), but no large anchor publisher client, while CDS now has two major graphic novel houses around which to build its graphic novel bookstore distribution business.