Industry Veteran Ben Abernathy Joins as Executive Editor; Arune Singh Upped to VP, Brand

LOS ANGELES 04/02/2024— Today Skybound Entertainment, the creator-led, multiplatform entertainment company behind mega hit franchises Invincible, The Walking Dead, and Impact Winter, announced the onboarding of three new hires joining its editorial staff—Ben Abernathy (DC Comics), Blake Kobashigawa (IDW Publishing), and Alex Hargett (IDW Publishing), alongside the promotion of i Arune Singh.

Skybound saw tremendous success with its comics in 2023, with much of that contributed to key licensing partnerships. With leading toy and game company Hasbro, Skybound launched the all-new Energon Universe and revitalized Larry Hama’s G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero,and with Universal Products & Experience, Skybound launched the Universal Monsters line. An Energon Universe tentpole title, Transformers #1 was the bestselling comic book of 2023.


Skybound continues to ascend with the adaptation of its comics IP, with the hit adult animated series Invincible currently closing out season 2 on Prime Video. The company continues to announce key licensing, content, and product partnerships across video games, merchandise, tabletop games, and music, as well as continually printing comics, published by Image Comics, to meet fan demand.


“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” said Sean Mackiewicz, SVP, Publisher. “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.”


Ben Abernathy joins as Executive Editor, overseeing the Energon Universe, as well as a developing a new slate of original projects from comics’ top creators. Prior to joining Skybound, Abernathy was an Executive Editor at DC Comics, overseeing the entire Batman family line of titles as well as assembling their 2024 Elseworlds imprint relaunch. Skybound is the latest step in a career spanning over two decades, with stops at Marvel Comics, Dark Horse Comics, and more.

Blake Kobashigawa joins as Senior Director, Business Development, where he’ll be growing Skybound’s footprint outside traditional distribution channels. Blake will be creating new strategic partnerships, as well as managing licensor relations, retailer exclusive variant cover programs, foreign licensing, and more. Prior to joining Skybound, Kobashigawa has worked in sales, marketing, content strategy, operations and business development at comics publishers such as DC Comics and IDW Publishing, as well as music merchandise platform Merchbar.

Alex Hargett joins Skybound as Director, Brand, Editorial, leading day-to-day Sales & Marketing strategy around publishing lines of business. She will be focused on further developing bookseller and librarian relationships, with a focus on growing comics readership across audiences. Hargett comes to Skybound with over twelve years of experience in publishing, focusing on sales, marketing, and publicity at various publishers including IDW Publishing, DC Comics, and Penguin Press.


Arune Singh has been promoted to VP, Brand, Editorial. Previously Director, Brand, Editorial, Singh joined Skybound in January 2021 and has been instrumental in its marketing and sales successes. Singh has cracked open the Book Market, paving the way for the launch of Skybound Comet and expanding Skybound’s footprint with bookstores, libraries, Scholastic, and more, which has been recognized with a 2022 Publishers Weekly Star Watch honoree distinguishment. He’s also coordinated the launch of the Energon Universe, an unqualified commercial success in the Direct Market, and leveraged his relationships with comic book influencers to create buzz in the collectors’ market. In his new role as VP, Brand, Editorial, Arune will be leading the rapidly expanding Brand team to continue to create and execute innovative marketing and sales plans for a rapidly expanding publishing line. Prior to joining Skybound, Singh was instrumental in historic publicity and marketing campaigns with Marvel Entertainment, Syfy, and BOOM! Studios.


Skybound’s Editorial leadership team is rounded out by Editorial Director Alex Antone. Also a 2022 Publishers Weekly Star Watch honoree, Antone has led tremendous growth for the company across licensed comics with Creepshow, G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, and the Universal Monsters line, Kickstarter campaigns including Extra Fabulous, Mr. Lovenstein, and Extremity:Signature Edition, and the young readers imprint Skybound Comet, whose releases include the acclaimed Clementine and Ava’s Demon graphic novels.


These hirings join a handful of recent strategic executive moves at Skybound, who has been steadily fortifying its senior executive team with key hires across the company’s verticals. New additions include Jeff Chaiken as SVP, Head of Corporate Development and Strategy and Chris Paulson as Executive Vice President and General Manager of Games Publishing, as well as key executives across film, television and video games to be announced.

Ben Abernathy

Blake Kobashigawa

Alex Hargett

Arune Singh

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