Antarctic Press, who has been publishing manga inspired comics like Ninja High School and Gold Digger since long before many in North America had even heard of manga, is in a bit of a rough spot with debt, mostly as a result of retailers like Wal-Mart returning product. To help them through, they've launched an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign which is already 5/6 the way towards its goal.
As they explain:
While we have been in business for many years, it has never been a financial windfall; we made comics we wanted to read and share with the world. Over the past year and a half, we took the step of expanding into the mass retailer market—specifically, into retail stores like Wal-Mart. While this distribution channel gave us extensive exposure to a much wider audience, it was also very costly to supply it, mostly owing to necessarily large print runs. Our inexperience in this market resulted in us being ill-prepared for returns. This, in combination with the large printing bills, has placed us in a financial quandary. The bottom line is that all this hard work over so many years is now in jeopardy. Everyone here has sacrificed in their own way to help us stay in business, including taking business and personal loans to help us climb out of the hole we made for ourselves. Unfortunately, we still need help. This situation could force us to make significant changes in our future publishing operations. This is where we hope you can contribute. Even a few of you could make a huge difference.
Help Us Keep Antarctic Press…Being Antarctic Press
So what is the money going for? The best way to describe it is paying down the debt incurred from the large print runs and heavy returns. It is always difficult to ask for help, but due to current circumstances, we have incurred over $70,000 in debt and costs from returns. We do not ask or want anyone to just pay our debt for us; we believe we have provided some great perks for your support. It is difficult to see things go south at this time; we have an extremely strong schedule coming up and would hate to see these projects not come to fruition. In addition, we are attending conventions, developing an app for our library of titles, and working on books and projects outside the comics industry, which will go towards righting our previous mistakes. However, all these projects will take time to implement, and right now we need your help to keep us going until then. That is why we are starting this campaign and asking for your support. Many great titles like Strangers in Paradise, Ninja High School, Gold Digger, and Last Zombie, which are from lots of great creators, might not have been released without Antarctic Press. Now you can help us keep on doing what we do best. And if none of these perks appeal to you, you can still visit our website to check out what other products we have to offer.