Manga sales in Japan has increased 1% in 2014 and the modest growth was attributed to top sellers including Haikyu!! and Ao Haru Ride, both had very successful TV anime or live-action film adaptations last year, in addition to the continuously popular series like One Piece and Hajime Isayama’s Attack on Titan.
The vast majority of manga sales in Japan only stem from a few perennial bestsellers. The titles that sell really well, blow away anything that Marvel or DC does in the United States. In the US, if a comic sells over 100,000 copies it is considered a bestseller. Over in Japan things are quite a bit different.
One Piece sold 11,885,957 copies in 2014, while Attack on Titan proved to be quite popular, selling 11,728,368 titles. Haikyu!! managed to sell a staggering 8,283,709 copies and upstart Tokyo Ghoul sold over 6,946,203.
The manga publishing industry has firmly relied on print sales in order to generate the their revenue, but digital is starting to take off in a big way. New research has reported that manga accounts for 80% of all digital book sales in Japan. Digital has risen 20% from April 2013 to March 2014 and the entire net worth of the industry has said to be valued at $540 million US.
Michael Kozlowski has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past twelve years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times. He Lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.