Spider-Man Beats the Avengers, Batman, and Superman

When it comes to dollars, it isn’t the comics that pays the bills for DC Comics or Marvel (or their parent companies), it’s the licensing of the 1000s of characters each character controls.

In May, License Global ranked Marvel parent company Disney at the top of a list of licensors with sales of around $41 billion in 2013. In contrast, DC’s parent company Warner Bros. was in seventh earning $6 billion. That’s not bad, but that’s a huge gap between the two.

Surprisingly though (or maybe not so much) Spider-Man is the strongest property according to the Licensing Letter. Spidey’s global retail sales is about $1.3 billion with the Avengers earning $325 million in 2013. DC’s Batman earned $494 million, while Superman earned $277 million.

What’s fascinating in the chart below are those earnings in the U.S. and Canada versus globally. Spider-Man and Batman are actually close for the former, and it’s the latter where the webhead takes off.

It’ll be interesting to see future reports, especially with Guardians of the Galaxy exploding this year at the box office.

licensing earningsPhoto credit: AP Images