In a followup interview looking for more details about Boom! Studios’ acquisition of Archaia, company executives said that Archaia founder Mark Smylie remains with the company, that Archaia will move to the Boom! offices in L.A, and the new company is still working on the size of its combined list and on its book trade distribution.
Archaia was acquired in late June and will become an imprint at Boom! Archaia was cofounded in 2002 by Mark Smylie and since that time the independent comics publisher has gone through a move to the West Coast, expansion into licensed properties, another acquisition, a distribution glitch and a reorganization and a new CEO. Since the acquisition by Boom!, an indie comics publisher much like Archaia, the two companies have announced that there will not be any layoffs and that Archaia executive leadership will continue to direct it as an imprint at Boom!
In a followup interview, company executives emphasized that Smylie will remain with the company (his role was unclear in the initial announcements of the deal). “Mark is an instrumental piece of the acquisition and he is staying on as Archaia’s chief creative officer,” Mel Caylo, Boom! marketing manager, told PW in an email. In addition, both companies are based in Los Angeles and Archaia will move into Boom! Studio’s larger offices, Caylo said. Filip Sablik, Boom! v-p, publishing and marketing, said, “everyone involved felt like it was incredibly important for the two teams to come together quickly, so we can start thinking of ourselves as one team. I'm personally looking forward to seeing my buddy Mel every day!”
Asked about the number of titles the new company will release as well as who will handle its distribution to the book trade, Sablik asked for patience, emphasizing that deal is “still incredibly fresh. It’s a bit too soon to give any numbers.” Caylo said that Archaia will continue to publish 24-30 books a year and that its 2013 editorial schedule “will not change. The 2014 schedule still has to be finalized.” Sablik said “We’ll be working out the details of our combined publishing schedule with the Archaia team as we look beyond 2013,” and said book trade distribution was still being worked out. “We'll be having discussions with our distribution partners soon to sort out the details,” he said.
But Caylo was quick to note that Archaia’s hardcover publishing program will continue—unlike most comics publishers, Archaia releases virtually all of its books initially in hardcover, like a trade book publisher, and generally does not release trade paperbacks. While he said Archaia will add some paperbacks to its list, Caylo said emphatically, “Yes! While Archaia will be putting out a few softcovers, the majority of its releases will still be hardcover books.”