Manga publisher Kadokawa has acquired a majority stake in the media company Anime News Network Inc. largely known for their proprietary news site Anime News Network.
In a post announcing the acquisition from Anime News Network themselves, ANN will become a new company under Kadokawa’s US holding company Kadokawa World Entertainment. Current ANN president Christopher Macdonald will become a publisher under the new organizational structure.
Kurt Hassler, the CEO of Kadokawa World Entertainment and Publisher at Yen Press goes on to explain that their new ownership will strengthen the manga publisher’s global marketing strategy and will enable the manga publisher to “highlight its own content”. ANN Had this to say about their acquisition:
Our decision to proceed with the acquisition is intended to further strengthen KADOKAWA‘s global marketing efforts relating to the digital and physical products handled by BOOK☆WALKER Co., Ltd. (Headquarters: Tokyo) which operates an English online ebook store (BOOK WALKER Global), YEN PRESS, LLC (Headquarters: New York, hereinafter “YP”) which engages in the comprehensive English publication of manga and light novels, etc. in North America, and J-Novel Club LLC (Headquarters: Texas) which engages in the English e-book publication of Japanese light novels and the operation of a digital subscription service platform among others in the English- speaking market.
The transaction is contemplated to be pursued through the acquisition by a newly established company under KADOKAWA‘s US holding company KADOKAWA WORLD ENTERTAINMENT, INC. (Headquarters: Delaware, hereinafter “KWE”) of all of the related business assets from ANN, scheduled to be completed by the end of the year. The transaction, its value is not disclosed, would have no material impact on KADOKAWA‘s consolidated business results. Following the completion of the transaction, we intend to further expand of all of the group’s businesses in the English-speaking market by strengthening collaboration in promotion and other areas among each of the group’s aforementioned businesses.
While it’s possible to speculate about potential conflicts of interest with reviews of their new parent company’s products, it’s premature to say if ANN will change how they operate as a response to the acquisition.