Anime Expo 2010 Crunchyroll Industry Panel
by Zac Bertschy,
Announced merely an hour before it started, Crunchyroll held an industry panel on Thursday for an intimate crowd. Headed up by CEO Kun Gao and brand manager Keith Kawamura, the panel opened with a brief series of slides introducing the company and then quickly moved on to a handful of new initiatives.
First up, they announced that Crunchyroll is an initial partner in Adobe's Mobile Flash program, which will bring flash content to Android mobile devices. In mid-July, they will be adding streaming 3G support (at present, Crunchyroll can only stream on mobile devices via wi-fi access). Those with Android mobile devices can visit m.crunchyroll.com for more information. Without mentioning specifics, they also spoke very briefly about upcoming game console support for Crunchyroll.
Following that, a little financial information was given – their revenue is growing, with 30 to 40 percent growth quarter to quarter and had their first break-even month in May 2010. According to the presentation, over half of Crunchyroll's revenue is shared with the companies they license anime from.
Although few details were given, Gao talked about Crunchyroll's upcoming Digital Manga initiative. They've partnered with Bitway, a subsidiary of Toppan, the largest manga distributor in the world and the sole provider of digital manga content in Japan; presently they handle over 25,000 manga titles and have partnerships with every major manga publisher in Japan. No further details were available at the panel, but a press release with more information will be released Friday, July 2.
Finally, they went into their localization program, which allows approved users to localize all the content on Crunchyroll for their global region. While they'd like to be available in every language and every country around the world, they're looking for regional partners to assist in the localization effort. The panel concluded with a brief Q&A session.
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