According to advertising industry sources on January 12, Naver, South Korea's largest internet company, is estimated to have logged 2.95 trillion won (US$2.5 billion) in sales from the advertisement sector last year. In particular, the company is expected to have brought in nearly 810 billion won (US$686.73 million) in sales in advertisements in the fourth quarter of last year.
Naver earned more money through advertisements than the total amount earned by the domestic TV networks. The last year's advertisement revenue of the major three broadcast TV stations, excluding those of sponsorships and local commercial television networks, is estimated at 1.23 trillion won (US$1.04 billion) – KBS with 402 billion won (US$340.82 million), MBC with 500 billion won (US$423.91 million) and SBS with 337 billion won (US$285.71 million). Korea Broadcast Advertising Corporation (KOBACO) said that the total domestic advertising expenses of 2016 stood at 11.3 trillion won (US$9.58 billion).
The combined ad revenue of the domestic paper media outlets came to 1.54 trillion won (US$1.31 billion) in 2016. Naver’s revenue generated from advertisements last year was more than the total revenue of the nation's newspapers and TV networks.
The keywords for the high growth of Naver’s ads are “mobile” and “shopping.” Starting from February last year, Naver has added new pages like “topic board” and sold mobile display advertisements in earnest. Its keyword search for shopping, which has started providing services from November last year, also put up a good show, helped by the launch of its simple payment service, Naver Pay.
Meanwhile, securities industry sources also expect that Naver to log 3.54 trillion won (US$3 billion) in sales from the ad sector this year. Although all TV network, printing and outdoor ads industries are slowing down, Naver is expected to show continuous growth.