The domestic digital content industry is expected to top 100 trillion won in sales this year.
The Ministry of Culture, Sports & Tourism and the Korea Creative Content Agency announced on Jan. 19 that the sales of the industry increased 3.4 percent in 2014 to 94.3 trillion won (US$87.0 billion), with its exports reaching US$5.41 billion with a 9.8 percent year-on-year growth. They added that the figures are tentative and that sales are likely to add up to approximately 102 trillion won (US$94.1 billion) this year.
The game sector, which had shown negative growth in 2013, recorded 10.4 trillion won (US$9.59 billion) in sales based on 7.4 percent growth from a year ago. Mobile games accounted for 25.4 percent of the sales, which is a very high figure, given that the percentage stood at 4.3 percent in 2010.
Myeongnyang, which attracted 17.61 million users last year, has become the largest hit in the history of the domestic film industry. TV drama Misaeng’s high popularity raised the sales volume of the original book to about 2.3 million, and Naver webtoons about it recorded 6.2 million hits per day on average. The TV drama My Love from the Stars posted a visitor number of four billion on Chinese video sites with exports amounting to US$35,000 per episode. Also, more than 18 million people watched Korean TV dramas in the United States.
The Korea Creative Content Agency added that some sectors in the industry are facing serious challenges, though. “League of Legends has been the most popular game among Internet cafe users for no shorter than 127 weeks, which shows how imported games are encroaching on the market,” it said, continuing, “In the film sector, Korean movies had taken up 59.1 percent in 2013, but their market share fell to 50.1 percent last year, and is likely to dip below 50 percent this year.”