Del Rey reveals manga plans

posted on by Jonathan Mays
Fueled by a new relationship with Kodansha, Del Rey is setting their sights high with four new titles in the spring. updated, 3:12 PM

Excerpts from the press release:
Del Rey Books, an imprint of The Random House Publishing Group, announced today that it will launch a line of manga titles in conjunction with Kodansha, Japan's leading publisher of manga. This creative partnership is a direct result of the recent alliance between Random House, Inc. and Kodansha Ltd., Publishers, which was announced in January.

Del Rey will launch with the simultaneous release of four titles in Spring 2004. Each will be the first volume of an individual series—all top Kodansha properties; these will be followed up by eight additional volumes over the next twelve months. The titles will be released as trade paperbacks printed in the traditional Japanese format, reading right to left. The target audience for the program will be readers 13 and older.

“We're terrifically excited about working with Kodansha, and about the potential for expanding the audience for manga,” said Betsy Mitchell, VP/Editor-in-Chief for Del Rey. “Our program will mark the first time a major U.S. trade publisher has entered the manga arena. Random House's powerful sales, publicity, and promotional resources will bring manga to greater prominence in several markets that have not yet benefited from its current popularity.”

“We thank Kodansha for working with us to create this new program,” said Mitchell. “It's exciting to be able to trade ideas and concepts.”

July 17: 3:12 PM, ANN accidentally snipped the following paragraph from the press release.

Dallas Middaugh, former sales and marketing director for Viz, has been named as Director of Manga for Del Rey, reporting to Betsy Mitchell. He will oversee acquisitions as well as sales, marketing, and promotional strategies for the program. Widely respected as an expert in selling and marketing manga, Middaugh saw net revenue from manga publishing more than triple during his tenure at Viz.

follow-up of Random House aims for manga in spring 2004
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