Update: WALMART Testing Dedicated Graphic Novel Section In 50 Stores
Updated January 29, 2016: Newsarama has confirmed that Walmart has dedicated graphic novel sections set up in 50 of its U.S. locations as a test for further expansion. No details were given on the location or the precise titles being stocked.
Original Story: Following up on a partnership with Marvel and Viz, Walmart is "in talks" with Diamond Book Distributors for a dedicated graphic novel section in some of its stores, according to Publisher's Weekly. Diamond Vice President Kuo-Yu Liang revealed that detail in an interview with PW's Calvin Reid, as the talks come out of an increased stocking of Viz's manga in the past 18 months.
"[The Viz deal is] a great example of a lot of comics people working behind the scenes toward a much bigger project at Walmart," said Liang. "Walmart wants to be a part of this. Manga is first but other graphic novels are coming.”
Diamond Book Distributors sels on behalf of Image Comics, IDW Publishing, Valiant Entertainment, Dynamite and others in North America. Marvel and DC go through Hachette and Random House respectively for book trade retailers.
In 2014, Walmart began selling $5 editions of some Marvel TPBs including Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Amazing Spider-Man: Big Time, Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Avengers and Avengers: Heroic Age.
There are currently 4,655 Walmart locations in the United States, with an additional 6,310 internationally.