On Thursday, October 3, just ahead of the start of New York Comic Con, the Book Industry Charitable Foundation and comic book publisher Lion Forge announced the creation of The Forge Fund, a special fund established to support comic shops.
Lion Forge co-founder and CEO David Steward II and Annie Philbrick, owner of Bank Square Books and Savoy Bookshop & Café and member of Binc’s board of directors, appeared at the Diamond Comics breakfast to share the news of the $100,000 in seed money.
In addition to this initial investment, going forward, five percent of proceeds from select titles will go to the Forge Fund, with Gail Simone’s Catalyst Prime series Seven Days to be the first in the program.
“The Forge Fund expands a vital financial safety net and enables the Binc Foundation to help more comic book retailers across the country,” said Binc Executive Director Pam French. “Our most recent survey results let us know that one in five store employees have experienced a personal financial crisis within the past twelve months. This new fund gives the Foundation the ability to assist those working in the comic book industry who are facing financial emergencies today and in the future. Our thanks and gratitude go out to Lion Forge for recognizing this need in their community and taking action to help.”
“Comic shops and their employees are the reason we are all here, and the assurance that we can continue to evolve our customer base and grow the readership of this medium we ALL love so dearly,” said Steward. “As the industry finds itself in a time of transition, and in the wake of recent natural disasters, we knew that we had to do something meaningful to help. It’s for those reasons that today, we introduce the evolution of our partnership with Binc, and The Forge Fund. I also would like to personally encourage other publishers to join us in this effort, as this is an investment in the future of our industry.”
The Binc Foundation provides confidential financial assistance to comic retailers and booksellers who have a demonstrated need arising from severe hardship or emergency circumstances. Retailers and their families who are suffering from financial challenges due to illness, death in the family, expenses associated with escaping domestic violence, homelessness prevention, natural disaster recovery, and more now have a place to call when help is needed.
Binc can be contacted toll-free by calling (866) 733-9064 or by e-mailing or texting to firstname.lastname@example.org.