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Japan's Anime Internet Distribution Market Overtakes Home Video Market

posted on by Alex Mateo
Total production minutes for TV anime in 2018 is 2nd highest in history

The Association of Japanese Animations (AJA) published on April 30 an English summary of its "Anime Industry Report 2019" document that examines industry trends from 2018. The AJA published the Japanese version of the document last December, with the overall value of the anime market and the growth of the overseas market revealed at that time.

The English summary stated that the internet distribution market for anime overtook the home video market in Japan for the first time since the survey on internet distribution started 16 years ago. The internet distribution market was valued at 59.5 billion yen (about US$561 million), a 10.2% increase from the previous year. The home video market was valued at 58.7 billion yen (about US$553 million), a 23.3% decrease from the previous year, which marks the fifth consecutive year that the home video market decreased. The summary noted that anime fans are spending less on the home video market due to the availability of other alternatives and diversification of consuming patterns.

Total production minutes for television anime reached 130,808 minutes in 2018, the second highest in history, and a 12.9% increase over the previous year. The summary stated that production minutes for video-on-demand services like Netflix were not included in that number, but had they been included, the number might have exceeded the 2006 record of 136,407 minutes.

At the same time, 2018 saw a decrease from the previous year in the total number of television anime broadcast. The industry produced a total of 332 television anime, after 340 in 2017 and 356 in 2016. Of those 2018 anime, 235 were new shows, an increase over the 230 in 2017, while 97 of those anime were ongoing shows, a decrease from the 110 in 2017. Again, shows for video-on-demand services such as Netflix were not included. The summary noted that continuous daytime anime aimed at kids and family have decreased, but late-night anime series aimed at adults have increased.

The box office revenue of theatrical animation was 42.6 billion yen (about US$402 million) in 2018. The industry produced 74 anime films in 2018, a decrease of 10 films from the previous year. Although the number of films produced had been increasing since 2008, it has been slightly declining since 2015. Detective Conan: Zero the Enforcer (Meitantei Conan: Zero no Shikkōnin), the 22nd Detective Conan anime film, recorded the highest box office revenue for an anime film in 2018 with 9.18 billion yen (about US$87 million).

The anime market was valued at 2.1814 trillion yen (about US$19.9 billion) in 2018, a 0.9% increase from the previous year. The industry grew for the past nine years, and it reached a record high for the sixth consecutive year.

Both the Japanese domestic market and the overseas market saw slight growth in 2018. The Japanese domestic anime market grew for the first time since 2014. Meanwhile, the overseas anime market surpassed the 1-trillion-yen (about US$9.14-billion) mark for the first time, though growth in the overseas market slowed after a more steady rise in recent years.

Live events saw a 23.1% increase in 2018. On the other hand, merchandising rights markets decreased by 4.4%.

The AJA has been publishing annual reports since 2009, when the anime industry was in decline. The full summary is available to download from the AJA website.

Source: AJA

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