[Source: Kakao Entertainment]
Kakao Webtoon has become the most popular app in Thailand and Taiwan in digital comic downloads, elbowing out its archrival Line Webtoon in just a week after it first made inroads into the two markets, the company said Friday.
Kakao Webtoon – launched by Kakao Entertainment – released its digital comic platform in Thailand on June 7 and Taiwan on June 9. In both countries, the company claimed No. 1 in downloads in comic category on Google Play. Kakao Webtoon ranked No. 2 in entertainment category on Apple App Store in Thailand while No. 6 in Taiwan after Netflix.
Line Webtoon run by Korean portal giant Naver Corp., which reached out to Thailand and Taiwan in 2014, ranked No. 2 and No. 4 in the two markets, respectively, in downloads after Kakao Webtoon emergence. It, however, is still ahead of Kakao Webtoon in terms of No. of users and sales.
In Thailand, cumulative daily transactions of Kakao Webtoon reached 300 million won ($268,822) in just four days after release.
The successful landing of Kakao Webtoon service in the two countries is attributed to Kakao Entertainment’s competitiveness in webtoon intellectual property experience (IPX). IPX is Kakao Webtoon’s user experience and interface that most valuably shows intellectual property.
The company claimed that Kakao Webtoon has established a new standard in webtoon and web story sector in Thailand.
Kakao Webtoon’s original IP verified in Korean, Japanese, and U.S. markets also helped improve sales. On the first day of its service launch in the new markets, users clicked original IPs like “Solo Leveling” and “Charlotte has Five Disciples.”
Hyun Yang-won, head of Kakao Entertainment’s Thailand corporate, said that the company opened an official social networking service channel as soon as it opened a corporate in Bangkok in June last year and that it has continuously communicated with users and webtoon fans.
Oh Myung-soo, head of Kakao Entertainment’s Taiwan corporate, also noted that Kakao Webtoon’s future-oriented perspective and IP selection and operation capability proved to be more competitive than others.
Kakao Webtoon plans to launch marketing campaigns in full swing from July to solidify its top position in the two markets, with an aim to push out Line Webtoon by its archrival Naver.
In Japan, Naver was dominant leader in webtoon market until a year ago but gave in to Kakao Japan’s Kakao Piccoma.
Kakao Webtoon is expected to expand the number of digital comics and stories in the two regions – from current 70 to about 200 in the second half of the year.
Lee Jin-soo, head of Kakao Entertainment, said that Kakao Webtoon’s successful launches in Thailand and Taiwan are based on three factors – super IP portfolio verified in Korea, Japan, and U.S., differentiated IPX, and thorough localization. The company has earned confidence for further market expansion this year.
By Lim Young-sin and Lee Eun-joo
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