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Shogakukan and Marubeni Launch MAG.NET to Globalize Japanese Manga and Anime

New venture aims to establish direct distribution channels and combat piracy in global markets
m 8002.TSE Blue Chip 150 Anime 20
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Shogakukan and Marubeni have announced the formation of MAG.NET Inc., a new company established in June 2024 to expand the global reach of Japanese manga and anime. The joint venture involves Shogakukan, a leading domestic publisher, Marubeni, a major general trading company, and Marubeni Forest Links, a subsidiary specializing in paper products for manga and other media. Shogakukan’s President and CEO, Aiga Nobuhiro, will serve as the representative director of MAG.NET.

The creation of MAG.NET comes in response to the booming manga and anime industries. Despite the worldwide popularity of Japanese content, there has been a lack of established sales channels and retail networks outside Japan. This gap has led to missed opportunities and the proliferation of pirated products. MAG.NET aims to address these issues by developing a system for distributing authentic manga, anime, and related merchandise globally, ensuring proper sales and profits while reducing piracy.

MAG.NET will leverage Shogakukan’s industry connections to attract additional partners, and will collaborate with Tokyo Otaku Mode for product distribution. Marubeni and Forest Links will focus on building retail stores and distribution networks in Japan to support the export of Japanese content.

This venture marks a significant collaboration between a major publisher and a general trading company, underscoring the rapid growth of the anime and manga sectors. Similar moves have been observed with other trading companies, such as Sumitomo Corporation and Itochu Corporation, which have also invested in the anime industry through various subsidiaries and partnerships. Marubeni’s entry into this space is notable given its recent limited activity in the anime sector, drawing considerable attention to its strategic expansion efforts.



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