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  • Greg Phillips

Manga sales are on the rise!

Updated: Aug 9, 2022

Over the past 24 months or so, Manga sales have been, for lack of a better term, killing it. Many give credit to the pandemic for this significant uptick, while others point their finger at the creative bankruptcy of the more traditional sales leaders (oh, my beloved Marvel heroes. What have they done to you?!).

Personal gripes aside, whatever the reasons behind Manga’s upsurge, the market has never been better, and if current sales figures are any indication, it isn’t slowing down anytime soon.

Historical figures.

To get an idea of just how much the Manga market has grown, consider that over the past two years, it’s reached its highest level ever — according to Square Enix Manga & Books, it’s more than two-and-a-half times larger than it was during the previous boom back in 2007.

This ‘boom’ has publishers launching even more titles and channels to satisfy their growing readerships,’ with stories emanating not just from Japan, but also from South Korea, China and here in North America.

According to NPD Bookscan, initial volumes of series including Attack on Titan, My Hero Academia and Demon Slayer eclipsed 160,000 print copies in 2021, a year-over-year increase of over 25%.

More impressive, these figures don’t include digital editions, streaming and subscription readership, or other sales not reported to Bookscan (i.e., library purchases and sales at comic book shops).

Digging a bit deeper into the sales mix, many other Manga publishers have been reporting strong sales for their midlist and backlist titles. According to Udon Entertainment, it sold over 200% more copies of its Persona 3, Vol. 1 over the past year than it did during the previous seven years combined.

Source: ICv2 Report

What’s triggered this tsunami of growth?

As we’ve mentioned, the pandemic and a growing dissatisfaction with Western-produced IPs are primary factors. However, the equally impressive growth of the Anime market has also been a key factor.

More and more readers are discovering Manga titles through their Anime show counterparts that are streaming on Crunchyroll, Netflix, Prime, Disney+ and others. So, the domino effect of streaming services experiencing a surge during the pandemic has led to an increase in Anime viewership, which in turn, has spurred consumer interest in the original Manga series that these shows are based on.

The numbers don’t lie.

NPD BookScan says Manga sales represented over 75% of the total sales volume of the comics/graphic novel category in the U.S. last year.

For the same time period, Manga, which is listed in the ‘Adult Graphic Novels’ category, grew nearly 100% compared to 2020, selling 15 million copies over the sales figures in 2020. This represents a leap of more than 170%. Whoa!

The bottom line.

So, where does the Manga industry go from here? That’s a good question. Based on other comparable markets (Marvel, DC, the MCU and DCU as a model), there are a lot of good (and bad) things coming our way.

The good stuff will no doubt come in the form of a slew of original, authentic content that readers can really sink their teeth into. Titles such as Chainsaw Man, Blue Lock and Tokyo Revengers are just a few examples of the incredible, original stories that the industry is producing.

The flip side of the coin has a myriad of ersatz properties trying to cash in on this high growth industry. Though this shouldn’t pose much of an issue as fans can smell a phony from miles away.

Everyone here at Anime Village is thrilled to be a part of the Manga industry. We’re even more excited to be dropping our first all-original title, the Adamanto ashcan, later his month. You can learn more about Shin’ichi and his cohorts at and by visiting our social channels.

Thanks for your time and the @AVisComing blog will be back next weeks with more updates and industry takes for you to enjoy.

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