In Japan, manga sales soared thanks to strong demand during the lockdown period and ease of reading on mobile devices. The end of 2021 was also marked by two symbolic events: the release of the hundredth volume of One Piece and of Detective Conan.
According to the Publishing Research Institute of the Japan Magazine and Book Publishers Association (AJPEA), a research body for the publishing world in Japan, manga sales in the Archipelago in 2021, on paper and digital media, are estimated at 675.9 billion yen (4.94 billion euros), an increase of 10.3% compared to the previous year, a record figure for the second consecutive year. For the first time ever, manga has won a share of more than 40% (40.4%) of the entire publishing market in Japan.
In 2020, the manga market benefited not only from the lockdown but also from the gigantic success of Demon Slayer and sales exceeded 600 billion yen for the first time. While expected to decline in 2021, sales actually recorded a record 10% increase. (See our article: How did the manga and anime “Demon Slayer” become a social phenomenon in Japan?)
By media category, manga sales on digital media increased by 20.3% compared to the previous year and amounted to 411.4 billion yen (3 billion euros). Those on paper (pocket format) also recorded an increase of 0.4% with 208.7 billion yen (1.53 billion euros), while manga magazines showed a drop of 11% with 55, 5 billion yen (406 million euros).
According to recent trends, with around 250 billion yen (1.8 billion euros), sales of manga in print, in paperbacks and magazines, remain at the same level. On the other hand, sales of manga on digital media have more than doubled in five years and their market share continues to grow.
The total number of copies sold for the year 2021 is expected to be 370.85 million, with a decrease of 2.8% for paperbacks, and 148.78 million copies, a decrease of 14 .6% for manga magazines.
According to the research institute, these figures are explained by the success not only of manga Jujutsu Kaisen and Detective Conan but also by the appearance of new manga applications and series presented on the web in 2021.
manga One Piece whose publication began in 1997 reached the hundredth volume in December 2021, and 490 million copies have been sold in total worldwide. The publication of the hundredth volume of Detective Conanwhose series began in 1994, has also been particularly noticed.
(Title photo: on the occasion of the publication of the 100and manga volume One Piecethe 18m-wide “giant library” is on display in Tokyo on September 17, 2021. Jiji)