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ADV/Sojitz Deal Continues Trend

posted on by Jonathan Mays
More Japanese companies taking control of overseas distribution

Japan Content Investments's equity investment in ADV is the latest in a sequence that has seen Japanese trading firms take more control of anime's overseas distribution.

Earlier this month Mitsubishi Corp established a ¥2 billion anime investment fund with Dentsu that included a Mitsubishi subsidiary acquiring 34% of Geneon Entertainment USA.

On the same day of the Mitsubishi deal, Mitsui agreed to take a 10% stake in movie distribution firm Shochiku. The wide-ranging partnership covers overseas distribution as well as cell phone video sales and live-action and anime production.

Last year Bandai Visual opened a US subsidiary with a ¥100 million capital to sell anime in America. The company is separate from Bandai subsidiary Bandai Entertainment, which has released anime in the US since 2000. This weekend Bandai Visual USA is screening Patlabor 2: The Movie, which it will release July 11 through Image Entertainment. Manga Entertainment previously released the film in 2000.

In addition to Japan Content Investments's purchase of 20% of ADV's outstanding shares, the investment firm will set up a new company called ARM, which will purchase 20-30 Japanese productions a year, Nikkei reports (registration required). This chart from Sojitz's news release illustrates the new relationships.

follow-up of ADV Teams up with Sojitz
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