SEOUL, Dec. 23 (Korea Bizwire) — South Korea’s web comic industry logged 640 billion won (US$577 million) in sales last year, up 37.3 percent from the previous year, a report showed Wednesday.
The Korea Creative Content Agency (KOCCA) report found that the country’s web comic industry experienced a boom last year thanks to increased paid content, which accounted for 69 percent of total sales, and overseas content sales at 16.2 percent.
Web comics have recently become a major driver of South Korea’s media industry, with numerous works being used as the source material for popular TV series.
The country’s top internet portal operators Naver Corp. and Kakao Corp. both offer web comic services.
The KOCCA report, which surveyed 43 web comic companies and 635 web comic artists, added the industry’s sales will also likely improve this year amid the stay-at-home trend spurred by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The report also found that illegal distribution of web comics weighed on the industry, estimating losses of 318.3 billion won last year. It also noted that the number of new web comics slightly declined last year to 2,767 from 2,853 in 2018.