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Penguin Group USA Inks Deal to Publish Manga for Kids & Adults

Penguin Group USA has signed a three-year deal to publish manga with Digital Manga Inc. in a deal brokered by Eloise Flood, publisher of Razorbill, the newly launched teen imprint from Penguin Young Readers Group and Hikaru Sasahara, ceo of Digital Manga Inc.

The co-publishing venture has Penguin Group USA committed to publishing 8-10 titles the first year and 15-20 per year thereafter. The first line is slated to launch in late spring 2005. Razorbill will publish children's and young adult titles. Adult books will be published by Leslie Gelbman, president/publisher of the Berkley Publishing Group.

"We are really happy to be in the manga business alongside Digital Manga Inc., said Doug Whiteman, president of Penguin Young Readers Group. We did a lot of research in an effort to find the right partner for our entry into this genre, and I feel sure that we have selected the ideal company in DMI."

"Penguin has been a major powerhouse in the publishing industry, added Sasahara. I believe our partnership with them will further strengthen manga among the core market as well as in the mainstream market. We are very certain that this bond will enable us to become the most successful manga publisher not only in the U.S. but overseas as well."

Digital Manga (www.emanga.com), a Los-Angeles-based importer and publisher of Japanese manga graphic novels, co-publishes the best-selling manga series TRIGUN with Dark Horse. DMI specializes in building corporate and cultural bridges from Japan to the Western Hemisphere, specifically through the licensing, importation and preparation of anime (Japanese animation), manga (Japanese comic books) and related merchandise in this capacity.