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WizKids to Consolidate Distribution

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Chad Ellis writes:

"In short, what they're saying is this: "Sure, you do good by your customers. Sure, they buy from you and are satisfied with the service and the product. But, you're online only we don't want your kind selling our product. Screw the customer, it's the distribution chain that we care about.""

I happily sell Battleground: Fantasy Warfare through online channels, but I can understand why a company whose game depends on active tournament play would want to cut out discount sales from channels that don't support tourney play.

Take Magic -- the stores that sell it can't compete with online sellers, but they do OK because of draft tournaments and "need-them-now" singles for constructed events, plus people like me who will deliberately pay extra to support the FLGS. Magic as a whole might be better off without online sellers, and it's quite likely that some CCGs have failed because the reduced profitability for stores caused stores not to run events.

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Jenny Berg of WizKids writes:

SEATTLE - WizKids, Inc. announced that it has entered into an agreement with Diamond Comic Distributors and Alliance Game Distributors for the core hobby portion of its distribution in the United States and Canada.

Wizkids logo

"Our strategic focus is to create a closer relationship with our retailers, protect the equity of our brands and reinvest in our products. Through careful thought and analysis we have come to the conclusion that these goals are best achieved by using Diamond and Alliance as our distribution partner for the Core Hobby portion of our business," said WizKids CEO, Lax Chandra. The agreement will better position WizKids to gain valuable customer feedback which will be used to improve product development, increase manufacturing efficiencies and create focused promotional and marketing efforts to increase sales in Core Hobby stores. "We firmly believe that working with Diamond and Alliance will work best to achieve our strategic goals and provide the best service for our retailers, our consumers and our business. We are excited by the opportunities that we hope to create in this new relationship."

"Diamond and Alliance are extremely excited to serve WizKids and the Hobby Game community in this capacity," said Steve Geppi, President and CEO of Diamond Comics. "We have devoted significant resources to support this effort and are confident in our ability to assist WizKids in reaching its goals as well as meet and exceed the needs of hobby retailers."

The agreement is effective immediately and will affect all future WizKids releases with the exception of HorrorClix: The Lab, Pirates of the Frozen North and DC HeroClix Origin. Former distributors who have placed pre-orders for these products have the option of receiving or canceling orders for these products under terms we have previously communicated to them.

Hobby retailers are urged to contact Diamond Comic Distributors or Alliance Game Distributors in order to receive uninterrupted WizKids product shipments. Retailers should call (800) 452-6642 ext. 215 or e-mail to open an account with Diamond or (800-NOW-GAME ext. 1005 or e-mail to open an account with Alliance if they currently do not have an active account with either Alliance or Diamond.