Press Release

(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.

2008 Gem Award Suppliers of the Year
Marvel Comics

Comic Book Publisher of the Year
Over 5% Market Share

Marvel Comics

Comic Book Publisher of the Year
Under 5% Market Share

IDW Publishing

New Comic Book
Publisher of the Year

Radical Publishing

Star System
Backlist Publisher of the Year

DC Comics

Game Manufacturer of the Year
Wizards of the Coast

Toy Manufacturer of the Year
DC Direct

Sports Card Manufacturer of the Year
The Upper Deck Company

Non-Sports Card Manufacturer of the Year

Video Manufacturer of the Year

Warner Home Video

2008 Gem Award Products of the Year

Comic Book of the Year
Under $3.00
Walking Dead #50
Image Comics

Comic Book of the Year
Over $3.00
Secret Invasion #1
Marvel Comics

Original Graphic Novel of the Year
Joker HC
DC Comics

Reprint TP or HC of the Year
Watchmen TP
DC Comics

Licensed Comic Book of the Year
Buffy the Vampire Slayer #12
Dark Horse Comics

Licensed Trade Paperback of the Year
Serenity: Better Days TP
Dark Horse Comics

Manga TP of the Year
Naruto Volume 28 TP

Magazine of the Year
Wizard Magazine
Wizard Entertainment

Toy Line of the Year
DC Direct 1:6 Scale
Collector’s Figures
DC Direct 1/6 Scale Black Canary

Toy Product of the Year
Dark Knight: The Joker
1:6 Scale Collector Figure
Dark Knight The Joker 1/6 Scale Figure

Collectable Statue of the Year
Batman: Black & White
Frank Miller Statue
DC Direct

Mini Bust of the Year
Women of the DCU Series 2
Wonder Woman Bust
DC Direct

Sports Card Product of the Year
Topps Chrome NFL T/C Box

Non-Sports Card Product of the Year
Marvel Masterpieces
Set 2 Trading Cards
Upper Deck

Game Product of the Year
World of Warcraft CMG
Upper Deck

Video/DVD of the Year
Batman: The Dark Knight DVD
Warner Home Video

via Diamond Comics Distributor



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