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A liquidation sale starts Saturday at The Comic Cave, a six-year-old business in the Fremont Center.
Photo courtesy The Comic Cave
A liquidation sale starts Saturday at The Comic Cave, a six-year-old business in the Fremont Center.

Free Comic Book Day starts closure for local store

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This Saturday’s Free Comic Book Day will be the last for a Springfield shop.

The Comic Cave LLC owner Josh Roberts said a liquidation sale, starting May 4, will wrap up by the end of July, when his lease is up at 1316 E. Battlefield Road in the Fremont Center.

“The closure is happening because I have too much debt on the store and sales aren’t supporting it,” Roberts said this morning.

The Comic Cave’s sales averaged $40,000 a month last year, which was about 7% less than 2017, and first-quarter revenue was down about 14% to start 2019, he said.

“The problem with the comic book industry is it’s moving away from supporting local shops just because of the way things are marketed, published and distributed,” Roberts said. “The publishers are doing more online content. They’re doing more things to entice people to get their comics digitally instead of printed.”

Additionally, Roberts said toy sellers require larger orders than he can sell at The Comic Cave.

“You have to order in such large quantities that it makes it pretty much impossible for someone like me to get that product,” he said.

Roberts, a more than 20-year veteran in the industry who’s a former comic and store manager at Vintage Stock, started The Comic Cave in August 2013, according to past Springfield Business Journal reporting. Roberts said this morning he’s unsure what’s next for him after The Comic Cave closes.

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