Market of China Animation Derivative Products

2012/1/16 10:43:00(Beijing Time)    by: EntGroup Consulting

Monopoly of foreign animation brands
"Gashapon” popular in Japan appeared in the department stores and street-front toy shops in Guangzhou; the peripheral products of Sakura Momoko introduced by Xinhua Shanghai Shanda Network Development Co., Ltd. for the first time made a debut in the market of Chinese mainland; the puppet series of Blizzard – World of Warcraft made by American Sota Toys were officially released in China; the first consumer goods flagship shop of Warner Brothers in China was ceremoniously opened in Shanghai; Barbie Doll entered China via Les Enphants; Taiwan OKWAP introduced limited-edition Hello Kitty mobile phones in Chinese mainland; Giordano received the authorization on Disney figures; Disney will open a theme park in Shanghai in 2012. Currently, domestic animation derivative product market is dominated by the animation images from the United States, Japan and South Korea. A domestic institution ever made a survey on top 20 most popular cartoon figures. Among Chinese cartoon figures, only Monkey King was in the list. 

The huge market and the weak creation ability make above 80% of the profit in Chinese animation market flow to Japan and the United States. China has become the largest importer of animation products. Japanese and American animations monopolize Chinese market in all aspects. Their products not only include comic books but also include films, TV plays, toys and other related products derived from cartoon and comics. At present, Japanese animations occupy 60% of Chinese market, European and American animations occupy 29% of Chinese market, while OVA created by China including Hong Kong and Taiwan occupies less than 11% of the market. According to the statistics, Snoopy, Mickey Mouse, Hello Kitty, Pikachu and Doraemon alone snatch 600 million yuan from Chinese cartoon market. When animation “Transformers” was broadcast in the TV stations of Chinese mainland, the producer didn’t collect any charge, but it earned five billion yuan from the sale of toys. In the face of the countless foreign animation derivative products, the domestic development of animation derivative products is far from enough owing to various reasons and the peripheral of animation is almost blank. Lotus Lantern, Journey to the West, Na Cha and Music Up also did little in exploring derivative products, such a “gold mine”.

Boom of the development of domestic animation derivative products
Armor Hero, Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf, Mojo Spy and Balala Little Fairy are all popular domestic cartoon images in the current animation derivative product market. Animation derivative products contribute to 70% of the total profit of the animation industry. This reality arouses great enthusiasm of the starting Chinese animation industry for the development of derivative products.

In the development of animation derivative products, Guangdong Alpha Animation and Culture Co., Ltd. is a prominent representative. This report will separately explain the case of Alpha Animation. In addition to Alpha Animation, other animation enterprises are also making nonstop exploration in the development of derivative products. The representative product “Blue Cat” created by Hunan Sunchime Cartoon Group is one of the representatives. The large popular science animation series “3000 Whys of Blue Cat” was broadcast by 1,020 TV stations in China including Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, 500h a day on average, accounting for above 60% of the broadcast hours of domestic animations. “Blue Cat” off the screen was quickly expanded to more than 10 industries including audio & video, books, stationery, toys, clothes, shoes and food. The company established a nationwide marketing network and 2,400 franchise shops in China and set up Beijing Marketing Planning Center and Zhejiang Yiwu Distribution Center. More than 6,000 kinds of derivative products in 17 categories created income of two billion yuan and earned foreign exchange of 20 million dollars in 2003.

According to international practice, the industry for development of animation derivative products usually adopts two roads: the first is to produce animations, comic books or games and then develop peripheral products based on the images loved by the people. Chinese Blue Cat and Magic Eye, American Batman and Spiderman series, and Japanese GUNDAM and Ultraman all adopt this model. The second is to develop idols independently and originally develop derivative products. Hello Kitty and Mashimaro belong to this category. "Incompetent Team” series mainly promoted by Sino-Japanese joint venture company Hangzhou Kawa Yi Cartoon Art Co., Ltd. adopts this road.

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