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Shogakukan, Shueisha Buy 2 European Anime Distributors

posted on 2009-08-28 11:40 EDT
France's Kaze, Germany's Anime-Virtual to be integrated with Viz Media Europe

The Japanese publishers Shogakukan and Shueisha have announced on Friday that have jointly acquired the Europeans anime distributors Kaze of France and Anime-Virtual of Germany. The price of the acquisitions was not announced. Like other anime distributors, both Kaze and Anime-Virtual produce localized versions of Japanee-animated works with subtitles and dubbing.

At the beginning of September, the two companies will be integrated with Viz Media Europe, a subsidiary of Viz Media that manages the European development, marketing, and distribution of anime and manga. Shogakukan, Shueisha, and a joint venture called Shogakukan-Shueisha Productions are the parent companies of Viz Media. Shogakukan and Shueisha themselves are part of the larger Hitotsubashi Group, and the two companies have coordinated overseas efforts before through Viz Media and Shogakukan-Shueisha Productions. Nikkei had reported last August that Shogakukan and Shueisha would join forces to directly publish manga in Europe starting in the fall of 2009.

According to the Nikkei business news source, the French- and German-speaking market for manga, television anime, and anime DVDs ranks at 2.3 billion yen (about 17 million Euros or US$24 million). The two companies offer DVDs of Shogakukan's Detective Conan and Shueisha's NANA, among many other titles.

Source: Sports Nippon, Nikkei's BizPlus


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