Exciting news about the future of Yen Press!

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Hachette Book Group and KADOKAWA Corporation announced today that they have entered into an agreement to create a new venture, joining HBG’s Yen Press imprint, a leader in the US publication of Japanese manga and light novels, with KADOKAWA, a major Japanese publisher. KADOKAWA will hold majority ownership, with 51% of the business to be acquired through its US investment company and HBG controlling 49% of the business. The transaction is expected to be completed by end of April, at which point Yen Press will function as Yen Press LLC, a joint venture between HBG and Kadokawa.

Yen Press is one of the largest English language manga imprints in North America, specializing in manga and light novels, publishing a broad range of titles including English translations of Japan originated titles, manga adaptations of novels by bestselling Hachette authors like James Patterson and Stephenie Meyer, and original manga developed at Yen Press. The joint venture will continue to leverage HBG’s strengths in manga publishing, distribution, sales, and marketing. Moreover, the partnership will enable Yen Press and KADOKAWA to maximize marketing collaboration between book publishing and anime distribution (through KADOKAWA’s expertise in the anime marketplace), while also seeking to expand ebook distribution, to maximize the growth potential of Japanese content in the North American market.

Michael Pietsch, CEO of HBG, says, “This new partnership with KADOKAWA is an exciting opportunity for HBG — the venture will further strengthen our Yen Press brand, and allow us to leverage KADOKAWA’s superb reputation in both manga and light novel genres, as well as their digital distribution and anime platforms. Combining KADOKAWA’s expertise in these categories, and HBG’s excellent sales, distribution and publishing support services, Yen Press will be well positioned to continue its remarkable growth. And this important new partnership is in extremely able hands, with Kurt Hassler as Publisher – no one is more perfectly suited to lead this new venture than Kurt, who has built the publishing program to where it is today.“

Masaki Matsubara, Representative Director and President of KADOKAWA says, “The North American publishing market continues to remain strong, and Japanese manga titles are enjoying an upward sales trend. Visitors at anime and pop culture events held in North America continue to rise year by year, demonstrating the increased popularity of Japanese content in the market. KADOKAWA considers the North American market as the most important international market for the company alongside the Greater China market and Southeast Asia where we have existing business presence, and are therefore profoundly pleased to have the opportunity to begin a joint venture partnership with a company of HBG’s stature, being a leading publisher in North America. Yen Press has an outstanding editorial team with in-depth knowledge of Japanese content, led by Mr. Kurt Hassler who has been running the Japanese manga publishing operation for many years. I am thus confident of Yen Press’s ability to realize sustainable growth, through its continued introduction of Japanese manga, light novels and many other attractive titles not limited to KADOKAWA titles, to the English speaking market centered on North America.”

Kurt Hassler, scheduled to be appointed as Managing Director and Publisher of the joint venture, says, “Yen has partnered with KADOKAWA since its inception, and we have always been so grateful for the wonderful titles they have entrusted to us. That may be why it feels so natural to be taking this bold next step together. I can’t think of another instance in the manga field in this market where leading publishers from Japan and the US have pooled their resources in a true joint venture of this nature, and with the demand for manga and light novels already exploding, the possibilities seem endless.”

About Hachette Book Group
Hachette Book Group is a leading trade publisher based in New York and a division of Hachette Livre (a Lagardère company), the third-largest trade and educational publisher in the world. HBG publishes under the divisions of Little, Brown and Company, Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, Grand Central Publishing, Orbit, Perseus Books, Hachette Books, Hachette Nashville, and Hachette Audio.

About KADOKAWA
KADOKAWA Corporation is a leading diversified mega-content publisher in Japan with a wide range of businesses including publishing of books, e-books and magazines, production and distribution of anime and motion pictures, game development and sales, merchandising and digital media among others, centered on a media-mix strategy leveraging on its rich content IP portfolio. KADOKAWA is the subsidiary of Kadokawa DWANGO Corporation, which was formed in October 2014 intended to establish the world’s leading platform for digital entertainment content.

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33 Comments

Please

Hopefully this means you can finally get Kino no Tabi in print.

Please.

Gavin Sega Gonzales

I swear if the series I’ve been wanting to come to the US is in the other 49%, I’m going to blow up the world.

Comics A.M. – Kadokawa Buys 51% Stake in Yen Press – Mostviral

[…] Publishing | Japanese publisher Kadokawa is buying a 51 percent stake in the American manga publisher Yen Press, which will become a joint venture between Kadokawa and Hachette Book Group. Founded in 2006 as a manga and graphic novel imprint of Hachette, Yen Press publishes Black Butler, Alice in the Country of Hearts, and the Twilight graphic novels, and it will release a new edition of Fruits Basket beginning this summer. In recent years it has expanded its line to include light novels (prose novels aimed at young adults), and that seems to be what Kadokawa, a major publisher of light novels, is interested in. With this deal, the top three manga publishers in the United States are wholly or partially in Japanese hands: Viz Media is co-owned by Shueisha and Shogakukan, and Kodansha Comics is a subsidiary of Kodansha. Vertical Inc., a smaller publisher, is partially owned by Kodansha and Dai Nippon Printing. [Yen Press] […]

Hunter Oshino

I really hope this means more light novel translations.

PLESE LET THIS MEAN MORE LIGHT NOVEL TRANSLATIONS.

Sam

OMG I’m dying to get Kino No Tabi (Kino’s Journey) done right in print, and the ToraDora! novel in print. I hope the level of quality in Yen Press’ titles will stay the same even though Kadokawa owns 51%.

Richard J.

So long as the same quality continues, and no titles are dropped, I will be happy. However, if either is negatively impacted by this, then I don’t even know what I’ll do. I’m following a lot of Yen Press manga and light novels, mainly because you’ve proven to be so reliable. Its my experience that having a Japanese corporate overlord leads to awful decisions that result in lower quality, higher prices, and fewer choices and series. I pray that will not be the case with Yen Press. I think it was a grave mistake to give the majority edge to Kadokawa.

Sega Kuro

Hope they start with Date a live or ore twintails, which reminds me, oreimo.

Daniel Emmons

While I know this means some titles are much easier to license now, I hope that this does not mean that you can’t license manga from other publishers like Square Enix.

Caro

So this means more Ligth Novels and not SE manga dropped? Then YES!!!!

Roxas

If you could license the Sunday Without God and Rokka no Yuusha novels I would die of happiness!

Gavin Sega Gonzales

If u license the date a live LN’s and manga series. I will do a lap around the world, in under 10 seconds.

JDMB

I know they want to expand e-books but I hope they also keep expanding their print books as well. Still prefer physical over digital.

Kate

I would be so happy if you did put out Kino’s Journey in print. I’m glad to see other people wanting it as well. Make it happen, now you can do it with ease. I don’t care if you release it slowly either

RootBeerMaster

If it means more light novels in English, then that’s great news.

I do prefer psyical copies over digital, but has long had they stay at a reasonable price it’s all good.

kimi

Please tell me that that means you are just going to translate Date a live light novel.

Tiaja

Can we start getting the digital manga in print please???

Robert Hemingway

I really want them to publish Death March kara Hajimaru Isekai Kyousoukyoku and Gun-Ota ga Mahou Sekai ni Tensei shitara, Gendai Heiki de Guntai Harem wo Tsukucchaimashita!? light novels there’s two LNs are really good storys and I hope that they get to be published in English PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!

Jonathan McElhatten

I’m hoping this will mean that there will FINALLY be an English publication for “Teito Monogatari”.

Ridanwise

Please. Please. Please let this means more light novels.
Joker Game first.
TRANSLATE JOKER GAME!

Epyon

Could you license the novels Juuni Kokuki, Kamisama no Inai Nichiyoubi, Rokka no Yuusha, Hai to Gensou no Grimgar?

Brian M.

I would like to see Yen Press publish a master edition of God Eater and Blazblue. I would also like to see a master edition of Soul Eater full color. That would be awesome!

Terra

Oh gosh. Just discovered this, after watching Ore Twintails on Funimation. Please translate the light novels for Ore Twintails (if you can), I haven’t had enough and there is always more to the original forms of things.

Angel

Please translate the Date A Live LN’s it’s a really good series and it’s very popular in North America I would happily buy every volume just to read it.

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