Over 600 retailers converged on the Baltimore Convention Center for the 2009 Diamond/Alliance Retailer Summit, bringing together the specialty marketâ€™s leading retailers, vendors, creators and distributors for two days of workshops, seminars, and a lively Exhibit Hall.
â€œThis is my first Summit, and I like it,â€ said Douglas Spark of Lancaster, PAâ€™s The Comic Store. â€œI enjoyed all the presentations I went to, and I picked up something helpful from all of them.â€
An integral part of what makes the Summit an invaluable experience for attendees is the Better Retailing Workshops, and this yearâ€™s event featured over ten different programming tracks.
â€œI thought the [Crossing Over: Becoming a Comics & Games Shop] workshop was a really good mix of ideas and practical advice and tips,â€ said Ernie Pellitier of Friendly Neighborhood Comics in Bellingham, MA. â€œIt was good to get other retailersâ€™ opinions on what works in their stores and what they think might work well going forward.â€
â€œI think the [Fixed Costs: Upgrading Your Merchandising Displays] was a great seminar,â€ said Lena Olsen of Little Shop of Comics & Cards in Scotch Plains, NJ. â€œIt explained how you can better organize your store, keeping things neat and appealing for customers coming in. That was helpful.â€
But it wasnâ€™t just the Workshop attendees who benefited from the event â€“ the panelists themselves found the experience both rewarding and enlightening.
â€œItâ€™s always an honor to be asked to participate in a panel, and I always find that while, in theory, Iâ€™m at the front of the room, presenting about something that I still love, I find that I take back far more than all the presentations that I can possibly do.â€ said New England Comicsâ€™ Henry Scagnoli. â€œInteracting with such great retailers is an honor and something that I look forward to every year.â€
â€œThis was one of the most successful Summits Iâ€™ve ever had the privilege to be a part of,â€ commented Roger Fletcher, Diamond Vice President of Sales and Marketing. â€œRetailers packed the Baltimore Convention Center, and it said a lot about our industry and its future. From the smiles, laughter, and conversations, Iâ€™d say everyone had a great time and got the most out of the experience, and thatâ€™s what the Summits are all about.â€
Diamond and Alliance would like to thank all of Summit Sponsors for their generation contribution to the event:
Gold Sponsors: Archaia Studios Press, Boom! Studios, Dark Horse Comics, DC Comics, IDW Publishing, Image Comics, Marvel Comics, Radical Comics, Viz Media, Wizards of the Coast, Wizkids
Silver Sponsors: Diamond Select Toys, Konami Digital Entertainment, Upper Deck, Wells Expedition, Wizard EntertainmentÂ Bronze Sponsors: Bandai America, Femme Fatales Comics, Game Station, Koplow Games , McFarlane Toys
ABOUT DIAMOND COMIC DISTRIBUTORSâ€”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.