Sony Reportedly Eyeing Anime Industry Expansion

It looks like anime is the name of the game for one of the world’s biggest media brands. Sony has its hands full with gaming consoles and electronics, but its eye is turning to something a bit different.

After all, a recent report by Global Times just went live, and it is breaking down all the ways Sony is interested in anime.

According to the report, Japan’s own Sony brand is looking to pursue anime harder than ever before. This decision was made in part due to China’s booming interest in the medium while its other ventures struggle to pull in profits like before.

An analyst says Sony has the expertise needed to succeed in globalizing anime, but it lacks the tools to stay ahead of the competition.

“Aniplex, Sony's anime unit, will turn its office in Shanghai into a subsidiary that will help expand the company's presence in the Chinese market through setting up an online shop to sell products featuring characters from popular anime shows and working with Chinese companies to produce anime for the Chinese market, the Nikkei Asian Review reported on Friday,” Global Times shared.

Continuing, the report leans on the expertise of Wen Shijun, a researcher of all things media for China’s Cinda Securities. "The real intention behind this move is that Sony wants a piece of the Chinese market," the analyst said, and he is not wrong about the country’s surge in anime consumption. The annual gross difference between China’s anime market in 2018 versus 2017 was nearly 14%, and franchises like Dragon Ball and Pokemon promise to make that number skyrocket in 2019.

So far, Sony has yet to give official comment on this reported plan, but fans would not be too surprised. After all, the company did make a similar move in the United States last year. After a long period of negotiations, Sony TV acquired Funimation, and the leading anime licensor was quick to integrate itself with Sony’s practices once the deal went through.

So, are you surprisd by this report...? Let me know in the comments or hit me up on Twitter @MeganPetersCB to talk all things comics and anime!

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