Shuho Sato: Publisher Lost Several Billion Yen Last Year (Updated)
posted on by Egan Loo
Shuho Sato, the creator of the Say Hello to Black Jack, Umizaru, and The Isle of TOKKOU manga, said in a Wednesday blog entry that a "major publisher" lost several billion yen (several tens of millions of U.S. dollars) last year. He added that, of the approximately 70 manga, fashion, and other genre magazines that this publisher prints, over 60 of them are losing money. In particular, Sato said that one "major magazine whose name everyone knows" loses 1 to 1.5 billion yen (about US$11-16 million) annually.
Sato further reported that all of the publisher's 10 top-selling books are manga, and predicted that three of these top-selling manga series will be ending this year. However, Sato believed that there are no new hit manga series that will replace them, and claimed there is word in the industry that this publisher will lose over 10 billion yen (US$110 million) this year.
Over the course of several blog entries last year, Sato described the state of the manga industry which led to his decision to self-publish his manga online.
Source: Gadget Tsūshin
Update: Matt Alt translated a January 9 blog entry by Love Hina manga creator Ken Akamatsu regarding the state of the manga industry, especially in regards to compiled book volumes (tankōbon) and magazines (via Ain't It Cool News.)
this article has been modified since it was originally posted; see change history