Anime Herald - Tumblr Edition
Zombified: Reboot Sees Wonder Momo Get Anime SeriesEarlier today, Anime News Network reportedthat Wonder Momo will receive a new lease on life. The…View Post

Zombified: Reboot Sees Wonder Momo Get Anime Series

Earlier today, Anime News Network reportedthat Wonder Momo will receive a new lease on life. The…

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Chernin in Talks to Buy Majority Stake in CrunchyrollA few days ago, Variety reportedthat the Chernin Group is in “advanced discussions” to acquire a…View Post

Chernin in Talks to Buy Majority Stake in Crunchyroll

A few days ago, Variety reportedthat the Chernin Group is in “advanced discussions” to acquire a…

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Daisuki Evolves With Tablet App And Non-Anime Content©NISIOISIN/KODANSHA, ANIPLEX, SHAFT
Earlier today, Daisuki made two somewhat large-scale…View Post

Daisuki Evolves With Tablet App And Non-Anime Content

©NISIOISIN/KODANSHA, ANIPLEX, SHAFT

Earlier today, Daisuki made two somewhat large-scale…

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A Meeting of the MindsOver the weekend, we’ll be hosting what I like to call a “meeting of minds” at Herald Headquarters.…View Post

A Meeting of the Minds

Over the weekend, we’ll be hosting what I like to call a “meeting of minds” at Herald Headquarters.…

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Case Study: Overcoming Startup ParalysisAs you recall, I’ve been talking about the start-up process, as we go through our analysis of the…View Post

Case Study: Overcoming Startup Paralysis

As you recall, I’ve been talking about the start-up process, as we go through our analysis of the…

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Toei Posts Record Quarterly ProfitsYesterday, AnimeAnime.biz reportedthat Toei Animation saw record revenues and profits in the first…View Post

Toei Posts Record Quarterly Profits

Yesterday, AnimeAnime.biz reportedthat Toei Animation saw record revenues and profits in the first…

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Shonen Sunday Drops Price, Sees 30% Sales IncreaseYesterday, ANN reported that Shogakukan lowered their price of Shonen Sundayon July 17. The drop,…View Post

Shonen Sunday Drops Price, Sees 30% Sales Increase

Yesterday, ANN reported that Shogakukan lowered their price of Shonen Sundayon July 17. The drop,…

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Defining a Vision of ProgressAnime Herald has been around for just under three years at this point. Over 800 articles, reviews,…View Post

Defining a Vision of Progress

Anime Herald has been around for just under three years at this point. Over 800 articles, reviews,…

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Senran Kagura Phone Straps And The Nature of StigmaEarlier today, Anime News Network reportedthat Toy’sworks would release a line of mobile phone…View Post

Senran Kagura Phone Straps And The Nature of Stigma

Earlier today, Anime News Network reportedthat Toy’sworks would release a line of mobile phone…

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Bandai To Discontinue Anime & Manga Sales

[caption id=”attachment_3372” align=”alignright” width=”332”] See you, space cowboy…[/caption]

Earlier today, Bandai Entertainment announced that they will start winding down their distribution operations. The company plans to send its final manga and novel shipments to retailers by the end of October. They will discontinue their home video business by March 1, 2013, with a final deadline for orders occurring on November 15.

Bandai’s exit from the market was inevitable. When the company announced that they would cease all licensing in January, it felt like a sad inevitability for the troubled distributor. Bandai was plagued by misfortune as early as 2009, when a number of us began placing the company on the annual “death watch” radar. This began in January, when Bandai Entertainment restructured, laying off 19 full-time employees. In May 2010, Eric Sherman of Bang! Zoom noted that the company was facing severe difficulties, and was hoping for the Haruhi franchise to be the silver bullet that saves the company, as they threw underperforming title after underperforming title into retail channel. Release dates on key titles slipped, and Bandai continued to pay top dollar for incredibly niche offerings, like Lucky Star and K-On!.

While, at this point, we won’t see much of an impact on the greater market, Bandai’s presence will certainly be missed. They currently hold a number of strong titles with great sales potential, which include like Gurren Lagann, Cowboy Bebop, and the Gundam franchise. Given that Bandai is essentially retreating to the role that Geneon currently holds, I have little doubt that we’ll begin to see partnerships and distribution agreements arise between Bandai and western distributors. While not every title will be rescued, I have little doubt that the shows that make money, and resonate with a greater market will be given their second chance with a publisher like Sentai or FUNimation. As for who will release which titles? This will surely become the topic of speculation amongst fans and industry watchers alike.

More than anything, Bandai’s exit is a sad reminder of the changing market we currently reside within. While we are beginning to see some growth, some branching out into new territory by the major players, there is still an unmistakable sense of dread in the air. Uncertainty continues to linger, as former establishment figures fade to give way to rising new entities, and industry powerhouses continue to dominate the key blockbuster licenses. While the corrections are no longer as drastic as they were in 2008, or even 2010, we will continue to see some form of reach toward equilibrium, as the economy creeps out of its current slump.