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NEWS: Bloomberg: China's Bilibili Anime Streaming Platform Aims for IPO in U.S.


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Яeverse



Joined: 16 Jun 2014
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 6:15 pm Reply with quote
Oh nice what weve always needed another, anime streaming platform.Hopefully they dont crash like CR who has lets its money and subscriber base get to its head making them forget what made their service decent in the past. Thankfully amzn has stepped up as the most stable platform during even peak hours.

Perhaps we can now get The Kings Avatar, among other things.
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HoboSoup



Joined: 06 Aug 2017
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 6:29 pm Reply with quote
Яeverse wrote:
Oh nice what weve always needed another, anime streaming platform.Hopefully they dont crash like CR who has lets its money and subscriber base get to its head making them forget what made their service decent in the past. Thankfully amzn has stepped up as the most stable platform during even peak hours.

Perhaps we can now get The Kings Avatar, among other things.


This comment is a joke right? Intentional satire I'm really hoping. Sure Crunchyroll has problems, but I watch anime on there every day without to many hiccups and I'm fairly pleased with the stream quality and subtitles. Admittedly a lot of people disagree with me and that's fine. However Amazon I'd argue is just objectively horrible. Unknown delays that they don't say anything about or try to clear up, almost no communication, sometimes wonky subtitles, including the time I saw them put |s after every word, so|it|looked|like|this|. Plus the additional thing of HAVING to have prime for 100 a year AND an additional fee of 60 dollars a year for exclusive anime only streaming. With their tiny catalog and what not. At least Crunchyroll's catalog in general keeps me pretty satisfied, 60 dollars a year, plus the episodes for free a week after they air in Japan. So it's even friendly for people that don't mind watching a show on a legal service and don't mind waiting a week.

Also as for Amazon's service it gives little to know incentive for people outside of the anime community to try anime, it's locked so tight behind so many pay walls, that most Amazon users wouldn't ever bother trying anime. At least Netflix while it does have huge delays and wait times gives every subscriber the option to try out their new anime, they don't shove additional fees down your throat.

Amazon is also only going to get so much worse the larger they become and the more they become a global monopoly on every market out there.
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flammie



Joined: 28 Jul 2003
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 7:00 pm Reply with quote
Яeverse wrote:
Oh nice what weve always needed another, anime streaming platform.


This is not a new streaming platform. This is an existing Chinese anime streaming company doing an initial public offering in the US, basically going from a privately owned company to a publicly owned one and at the same time raising cash.

In terms of "invest in what you know", it seems like a risky investment, unless you are familiar with the Chinese streaming market.
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zrnzle500
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 8:07 pm Reply with quote
Яeverse wrote:
Perhaps we can now get The Kings Avatar, among other things.


I was going to say it is available on Tencent's youtube channel, but that no longer seems to be the case.
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Polycell



Joined: 16 Jan 2012
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 8:42 pm Reply with quote
flammie wrote:
This is not a new streaming platform. This is an existing Chinese anime streaming company doing an initial public offering in the US, basically going from a privately owned company to a publicly owned one and at the same time raising cash.

In terms of "invest in what you know", it seems like a risky investment, unless you are familiar with the Chinese streaming market.
It seems rather odd to sell shares in a market they don't service, though. Either they're planning to break into the US market or the board doesn't want their shareholders to be able to exert any meaningful control.
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dragonrider_cody



Joined: 14 Jun 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 8:56 pm Reply with quote
Polycell wrote:
flammie wrote:
This is not a new streaming platform. This is an existing Chinese anime streaming company doing an initial public offering in the US, basically going from a privately owned company to a publicly owned one and at the same time raising cash.

In terms of "invest in what you know", it seems like a risky investment, unless you are familiar with the Chinese streaming market.
It seems rather odd to sell shares in a market they don't service, though. Either they're planning to break into the US market or the board doesn't want their shareholders to be able to exert any meaningful control.


It’s actually not unusual at all, especially for Chinese companies. The US stock market is the largest by number and amount of financial transactions, so it’s very attractive to foreign companies. This also makes it easier for American investors to buy shares in foreign companies, particularly those is tighter markets with more government oversight of their exchanges.

It’s generally more difficult for foreigners to invest on the Chinese stock market, than it is for foreigners to access the US one. So if the company wants to appeal to international investors, a US IPO is the quickest way to do so.

While I wouldn’t be surprised if they would want to expand into the US market in the future, that could be some ways off. Alibaba has been trading on US markets for years now and has almost no presence here. Not to mention, I would expect they would follow the lead of other Chinese media companies and invest in or acquire American media companies, rather than just launch their service here. They would probably do something similar to the Paramount and Legendary Films deals, so this could eventually lead to some consolidation in the market or expanded international access.
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zrnzle500
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 8:57 pm Reply with quote
Polycell wrote:
It seems rather odd to sell shares in a market they don't service, though. Either they're planning to break into the US market or the board doesn't want their shareholders to be able to exert any meaningful control.


Available capital is probably at least a factor. After all the over-investment in real estate in China (what with all the ghost cities), capital started leaving the Chinese market. So the Chinese stock exchanges are out. Given how well the US stock market has been doing, there is plenty of capital to be had. The source article said $1.3 billion have been raised in US first time share sales from Chinese companies this year
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Araragifeels



Joined: 06 Sep 2017
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 10:26 pm Reply with quote
Яeverse wrote:
Oh nice what weve always needed another, anime streaming platform.Hopefully they dont crash like CR who has lets its money and subscriber base get to its head making them forget what made their service decent in the past. Thankfully amzn has stepped up as the most stable platform during even peak hours.

Perhaps we can now get The Kings Avatar, among other things.


Dude what? Stop saying non sense that CR crash and that Subscriber it getting to it head.
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leafy sea dragon



Joined: 27 Oct 2009
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 10:38 pm Reply with quote
Яeverse wrote:
Oh nice what weve always needed another, anime streaming platform.Hopefully they dont crash like CR who has lets its money and subscriber base get to its head making them forget what made their service decent in the past. Thankfully amzn has stepped up as the most stable platform during even peak hours.

Perhaps we can now get The Kings Avatar, among other things.


The way I see it, the more competition, the better it is for consumers like you and me. This is particularly so if what I suspect is true and that bilibili will be sharing anime with some of the other streaming services (provided the others let it do that), because right now, the problem, on the consumer end, is that anime tends to be exclusive to one streaming service.

Of course, bilibili could easily crash and burn. Chinese companies have a history of not doing well in western markets when it isn't food-related. The way consumers behave in China is very different than outside of Asia, and it's a common mistake for them to either assume overseas audiences are like their domestic ones or to just throw money at a problem until it goes away.

Or, as was mentioned earlier, bilibili may not even try to sell to Americans except for its shares. As big as bilibili is in China, I do not think it's ready to go international, at least not without a lot of research. I've seen many companies destroy themselves trying to expand internationally (and not just ther international operations, but they spend so much money that they annihilate themselves completely). So far, for instance, German supermarket chain Aldi is trying to secure a foothold in the United States, but the Americans are ignoring it, by and large. (The supermarket business in the US is an extremely difficult one and varies tremendously in customer desires from region to region too. Look at what happened to northwestern chain Haggen when they tried to expand southward.) The people who run bilibili, I hope, are smarter than that and, if they ever choose to sell to Americans, will do so only when they feel they're confident they know how.

HoboSoup wrote:
Plus the additional thing of HAVING to have prime for 100 a year AND an additional fee of 60 dollars a year for exclusive anime only streaming.


This is something I've actually been wondering about: Are there just not that many anime fans who subscribe to Amazon Prime? I use Amazon Prime and have been using it long before Anime Strike as it allows me to circumvent the otherwise prohibitively expensive shipping and handling fees that owuld normally come with me getting things online. (For instance, I bought $10 of gummy bears recently because I love good gummy bears, and checking S&H, it was $8.)
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HoboSoup



Joined: 06 Aug 2017
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:37 am Reply with quote
leafy sea dragon wrote:
...


I mean there's not a ton of things I need to buy from Amazon so 100 dollars a year is pretty much an unnecessary expense for me. Going to the store to buy food is my main shopping expense and I like to support my local comic book store. So Amazon Prime PLUS the Anime fee is pretty steep in my opinion. Also regardless I think having double fees that are both required is a negative. As I said I think it prevents people that don't normally watch anime from at least trying something that catches their eye, why would they spend extra money on something they don't know if they'll enjoy? I think it's a negative that holds the anime Amazon streams back from reaching more of a general audience. I've had the chance to try Anime Strike because I gave money to a friend that already had Amazon prime, which I then decided it wasn't worth it for me.

Honestly I don't know if Crunchyroll cares less about their user base these days, to me it feels about the same as it always has. Nothing is perfect and big companies always have their problems, but it seems like Crunchyroll does try to get anime out there to a wider general audience. Amazon in my experience has never shown to care in the slightest, they have in general pretty much non existent responses and community interaction as far as I have seen. Also in terms of streaming territories if I remember correctly Amazon only has Anime Strike streaming for the USA. Where as Crunchyroll oftentimes streams their shows to lots of countries and sometimes even worldwide besides Japan. Also Crunchyroll has the deal with Funimation where a good amount of their shows get Simuldubs. I'm not personally a fan of dubs but I think it's a factor in helping anime reach a wider audience, I know there's a good amount of people that only watch anime if it's dubbed.
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Compelled to Reply



Joined: 14 Jan 2017
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:50 am Reply with quote
leafy sea dragon wrote:
Of course, bilibili could easily crash and burn. Chinese companies have a history of not doing well in western markets when it isn't food-related. The way consumers behave in China is very different than outside of Asia, and it's a common mistake for them to either assume overseas audiences are like their domestic ones or to just throw money at a problem until it goes away.

Or, as was mentioned earlier, bilibili may not even try to sell to Americans except for its shares. As big as bilibili is in China, I do not think it's ready to go international, at least not without a lot of research. I've seen many companies destroy themselves trying to expand internationally (and not just ther international operations, but they spend so much money that they annihilate themselves completely). So far, for instance, German supermarket chain Aldi is trying to secure a foothold in the United States, but the Americans are ignoring it, by and large. (The supermarket business in the US is an extremely difficult one and varies tremendously in customer desires from region to region too. Look at what happened to northwestern chain Haggen when they tried to expand southward.) The people who run bilibili, I hope, are smarter than that and, if they ever choose to sell to Americans, will do so only when they feel they're confident they know how.

Food is a little bit different than anime. For one, you need it to survive.

Also, Aldi has been nothing but successful in their expansion where I live the past several years. Competition is better, and it brought Trader Joe's with it, which is owned by the same people.
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dragonrider_cody



Joined: 14 Jun 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:54 am Reply with quote
Compelled to Reply wrote:


Also, Aldi has been nothing but successful in their expansion where I live the past several years. Competition is better, and it brought Trader Joe's with it, which is owned by the same people.


Trader Joe’s and Aldi’s are owned “by the same people” in only the broadest sense of the term. Different members of the same family control each company. However, each part of the family is only involved in one or the other, they have nothing to do with each ofher’s managment or ownership, and don’t share any operations. In fact, they are more distantly related than many other family owned companies in similar situations, such as Viacom and CBS (which are at least controlled by the same members of the Redstone family.)

Aldi’s has been in my area for almost 30 years, and one of their first American distribution centers is near where I grew up. They may not have the market share of our leading supermarket chain or Walmart, but they are still successful and have helped drive down prices. I’m not quite sure where the idea that Aldi’s hasn’t been successful has come from. They’ve been consistently growing sales and opening new stores for decades now.
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SWAnimefan



Joined: 10 Oct 2014
Posts: 608
PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 4:38 am Reply with quote
I'm skeptical of this. People need to remember all companies are technically owned by the Chinese Communist Government, not by the stockholders. Especially foreign ones.

It's not the first time they got people to invest in a company, then pulled the company, leaving stockholders with empty pockets. (Google it). American stockholders will not be protected if this happens. Plus investors would have to contend with shaky relationships.

And for the conspiracy nuts, there is the Chinese getting your personal information, so if there is a war, they could possibly leave you with empty pockets just for signing up to their services.

All in all, if you want to sign up to their service, do so at your own risk.
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Alan45
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 7:42 am Reply with quote
@leafy sea dragon

I didn't see anything in that article that said the Chinese company intends to extend service to the US. Only that they wanted money from US investors.

While competition is usually good for the consumer, streaming services are a different matter. To begin with, currently each service has a monopoly on the shows they carry. This means that if you want to see a specific show you can't decide that a competing service is cheaper or more robust and take your business elsewhere. This is complicated by the fact that several of the services are subscription only. That means you pay the same price if you want their entire offering or a single show.

The bottom line is that the competition we have now is good for the consumer only if you consider anime to be completely interchangeable and are satisfied with anything as long as it is anime. If you do you can go with the cheapest/best service that gives the most bang for your buck. I don't think this applies to many anime fans. Competition between two or maybe three services would be ideal. Competition between six or a dozen services is a decisional nightmare. Worse yet, you have to recompute your cost/benefit decision every season as shows change.

Amazon complicates the whole decision process by their requirement that you already subscribe to Prime. It is obvious that the management of Amazon thinks that everyone that matters already has Prime and that they are offering anime at a nominal cost. They probably think that this may cause a few of the sadly unenlightened to subscribe and see just how great the service is. They are wrong, (especially with anime fans apparently) but I doubt you could convince them. I don't subscribe to Prime. The only thing I buy from Amazon is books and media rate is cheap. In addition it only covers stuff directly from Amazon which is not the case for the older books I often buy.
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leafy sea dragon



Joined: 27 Oct 2009
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:06 pm Reply with quote
HoboSoup wrote:
I mean there's not a ton of things I need to buy from Amazon so 100 dollars a year is pretty much an unnecessary expense for me. Going to the store to buy food is my main shopping expense and I like to support my local comic book store. So Amazon Prime PLUS the Anime fee is pretty steep in my opinion. Also regardless I think having double fees that are both required is a negative. As I said I think it prevents people that don't normally watch anime from at least trying something that catches their eye, why would they spend extra money on something they don't know if they'll enjoy? I think it's a negative that holds the anime Amazon streams back from reaching more of a general audience. I've had the chance to try Anime Strike because I gave money to a friend that already had Amazon prime, which I then decided it wasn't worth it for me.


In would agree with you in that putting another fee on top of Amazon Prime would severely limit its audience and is a major hindering factor, but what I'm really wondering about are all the complaints about the "double paywall." As I already use Amazon Prime, it wouldn't be a double paywall to me, as Amazon Prime is already a part of our monthly expenses. Said numerous complaints about the double paywall suggests to me that Amazon Prime itself does not seem to be popular among anime fans.

Compelled to Reply wrote:
Food is a little bit different than anime. For one, you need it to survive.

Also, Aldi has been nothing but successful in their expansion where I live the past several years. Competition is better, and it brought Trader Joe's with it, which is owned by the same people.


Hmm, perhaps that's why people largely ignore Aldi where I'm at--I'm in the original territory for Trader Joe's, so there'd be little reason for Aldi to bring attention to itself if there's already a strong Trader Joe's presence.

dragonrider_cody wrote:
Aldi’s has been in my area for almost 30 years, and one of their first American distribution centers is near where I grew up. They may not have the market share of our leading supermarket chain or Walmart, but they are still successful and have helped drive down prices. I’m not quite sure where the idea that Aldi’s hasn’t been successful has come from. They’ve been consistently growing sales and opening new stores for decades now.


Wow, for that long? Aldi has only been present around here for about 3 or 4 years. Problem is that there are no locations in high-population areas in this region, all of them in small towns in the middle of the desert. I've seen advertisements that they're around here, but I had never actually seen an Aldi location in person until earlier this year. As a result, most people I've spoken to had never heard of it.

I have noticed a pattern of failure when it comes to grocery store chains trying to come here to the southwest though. Food Lion tried it a few decades ago and quickly retreated. Haggen tried it several years ago but failed so spectacularly that they had to close down most of their home territory locations in Washington to remain in business. And Fresh & Easy tried coming here and went bankrupt, then was bought out by another company and bankrupted them too. There is a particular way of running a supermarket here that, if you don't understand it (massive selection, fresh produce NOT in bags or plastic wrap, competitive pricing, as many name brands as possible both local and national, breads and pastries made on the premises, in-house butchers where you request the quantity of meat and they put it in a bag), will destroy your company. Kroger and Safeway only exist around here in chains owned by them (like Ralphs, Vons, and Albertson's). Kroger and Safeway stores themselves are not present. I cannot think of one grocery store chain that's still in business around here that did not begin locally except for Aldi, and Aldi seems to express little interest (or perhaps ability) to move in from the sticks.

Alan45 wrote:
While competition is usually good for the consumer, streaming services are a different matter. To begin with, currently each service has a monopoly on the shows they carry. This means that if you want to see a specific show you can't decide that a competing service is cheaper or more robust and take your business elsewhere. This is complicated by the fact that several of the services are subscription only. That means you pay the same price if you want their entire offering or a single show.

The bottom line is that the competition we have now is good for the consumer only if you consider anime to be completely interchangeable and are satisfied with anything as long as it is anime. If you do you can go with the cheapest/best service that gives the most bang for your buck. I don't think this applies to many anime fans. Competition between two or maybe three services would be ideal. Competition between six or a dozen services is a decisional nightmare. Worse yet, you have to recompute your cost/benefit decision every season as shows change.


That is indeed the problem I'm seeing: Unlike American programming (or programming from any country other than Japan, for that matter), anime, on streaming services, is dominated by exclusives. I don't know how this situation came about though, as, unlike with video games and their platform exclusives, none of the anime streaming services are owned by the companies that produce anime, and thus the anime producers have no reason to go exclusive all the time.

I think to most non-fans, anime IS interchangeable to an extent, as if they want to watch an anime, they might not know which ones they'd want to watch. Maybe something they've heard of like Attack on Titan or Dragon Ball Super. But I don't think that's what these guys making exclusivity deals actually want. Rather, it's simply because the anime streaming market hasn't reached its saturation point yet as far as the anime fan's willingness to spend money on these subscriptions and the anime producers not caring enough about the American streaming market to want to be on multiple services. In other words, your typical anime fan is currently content (if dissatisfied) with paying for them all, so it's not going to change yet. Once there are large amounts of people dropping their subscriptions to focus on other ones, I think that's when you'll start seeing multi-service deals being made as the ones falling behind want to regain the viewers they lost.
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