Home World Skybound Taps Comics Veteran Ben Abernathy as Executive Editor

Skybound Taps Comics Veteran Ben Abernathy as Executive Editor

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Skybound Entertainment, the multimedia company behind The Walking Dead and Invincible comics and TV series, is beefing up its editorial arm.

The company has hired longtime DC Comics editor Ben Abernathy to act as executive editor. The move had been expected since Abernathy left DC in January. Blake Kobashigawa, meanwhile, joins the company from comics company IDW as senior director, business development, while Alex Hargett has been tapped as Skybound’s director, brand, editorial. The company’s Arune Singh has been promoted to vp, brand, editorial.

The moves come after a banner year for Skybound’s publishing division and reflects a deeper commitment to the comic artform. Last year, the company launched what it called the Energon Universe, an umbrella for licensed G.I. Joe and Transformers comics, which have proven to hits with readers and critics. The Transformers title has sold so well it ranks along sales of Batman and Spider-Man comics published by behemoths DC and Marvel.

Per Skybound, Abernathy will ovesee the Energon Universe, as well as develop a new slate of original projects from top comic creators.

“Skybound is growing, starting with hiring one of the best editors in comics, Ben Abernathy, who’s working across original and licensed comics to make sure Skybound continues to be the premiere destination to make great comics” enthused Sean Mackiewicz, Skybound’s senior vp and publisher, in a statement. “At Skybound, creative and marketing work together to deliver excitement from announcement through on-sale. We couldn’t do that without Arune Singh, whose passion and experience has brought our line to new heights. From Invincible to the Energon Universe, Skybound is driving pop culture, and this amazing team is only getting started.”

Abernathy’s hire is a get as it brings a notable and established editor into the company’s ranks. Abernathy is known for his deep talent relationships and oversaw the Batman family line of titles, hiring now-superstar writers James Tynion IV and Chip Zdarsly on the Batbooks. Interspersed into his DC tenure were stints at Marvel and digital publisher Madefire. He began his career as an assistant editor at Dark Horse Comics.

Elsewhere, Kobashigawa has been tasked with growing Skybound’s footprint outside traditional distribution channels. Hargett will lead day-to-day sales and marketing strategy around publishing lines of business.

Singh, who joined Skybound in 2021, has been instrumental in its marketing and sales successes, according to Tuesday’s announcement. His work has paved the way for the launch of the graphic nvoel imprint Skybound Comet and expanding the company’s footprint with bookstores, libraries, Scholastic, and more, and was recognized with a 2022 Publishers Weekly Star Watch honoree distinguishment. He also worked on generating buzz in the collector’s market. Singh, who previously worked at Marvel and Boom! Comics, will now apply that same trade to the rapidly expanding publishing line.

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