Square Enix works not only in Final Fantasy series but they’re also responsible for publishing anime and manga. Famous titles such Full Metal Alchemist and Saki make part of this list but Kouji Taguchi, the head of this division is concerned why manga titles aren’t sold in the US as much as in Japan.
The best sellers in the US were Full Metal Alchemist and Naruto, but these only sold a tenth to a twentieth of what they sold in Japan.
I think the main reasons are as follows:
1. Fewer copies are printed and those that are get sold at a much higher price, from $8.99 to $12.99.
2. Children don’t get as much money, their allowances are just smaller.
3. The other reason is location. If you live in Tokyo there will be 3 bookshops nearby, which you can easily cycle to. In the US there aren’t any, they can only buy on a weekly trip to the mall. Even if anime is highly popular, they just don’t visit the stores to buy manga often.
Thumbs up to Kouji who is concerned in providing and publishing more copies outside than naming the differences between Japan and the US.
“Publishers such as Shueisha, Kodansha, Shogakukan and Kadokawa are setting up a digital platform on the PSP for distributing manga,” said Taguchi.