Tuesday, February 01, 2005

'Shonen Jump,' by the (puzzling) numbers

I wish Manga News Service had permalinks. Anyway, the website has an enlightening, if puzzling, country-by-country breakdown of Shonen Jump annual sales:
  • Japan -- 3.2 million
  • U.S. -- 350,000
  • Sweden -- 30,000 (launched in October 2004)
  • Germany (Banzai) -- 140,000
A Norwegian version of the magazine is set to launch in March.

I guess I'm surprised the U.S. numbers aren't higher. I was under the (apparently mistaken) impression that monthly Jump sales surpassed those of Marvel and DC's top titles, and that Japanese sales were in the millions weekly.

Update: In fact, this 2003 article cites a jump in monthly sales of the U.S. version from 190,000 to 305,000, and Shonen Jump's mission statement quotes a 3.2 million weekly circulation for the original Weekly Shonen Jump.

I think the figures in the MNS item are actually sales per issue. So, ignore "annual" in the piece and everything will make sense. I think.