San Francisco-based Anime video service Crunchyroll is expanding to Brazil: The company’s video service, which offers viewers access to 80 percent of the the Anime shows airing on Japanese television, will be available to Brazilian consumers with Portuguese subtitles starting November 1.
Cruynchyroll co-founder and CEO Kun Gao told me during an interview at the company’s office Tuesday that Anime has been very popular in Brazil for some time, in part because of a huge Japanese expat community in Brazil. “It’s the number one country of Japanese descendants outside of Japan,” he told me.
Check out my entire interview with Gao, or continue reading below:
Of course, Crunchyroll isn’t the only video platform targeting Japan. Netflix entered the country as well as the rest of Latin America last year, but has seen a slower-than-expected uptake of its streaming service. Asked about this, Gao replied: “We are going to see stronger growth than Netflix.” He explained that Crunchyroll has been able to break even after just six months in other foreign markets, and added that he expects to get to this point even quicker in Brazil.
Crunchyroll is relying on a freemium model to monetize its video service: Paying customers get access to ad-free Anime episodes the same day they air on Japanese TV, and are able to watch these episodes on a number of different devices including the PS3, the iPad and mobile phones. Ad-supported episodes become freely available on the web a week after airing on TV in Japan. The company announced in September that it had reached 100,000 paying subscribers.