Bilibili Acquires Emon Animation

Bilibili is China’s largest streaming service for Japanese anime and it was founded in 2009. The Chinese animation and comic-themed company announced that it has wholly acquired Shanghai-based animation company, Haoliners Cultures Media Co., Ltd., including Haoliners’ Japanese subsidiary, Emon Animation Company. 

About Bilibili

Bilibili ranks as China’s largest anime streaming service, topping TencentVideo and iQIYI. The company streams anime titles and also invests in anime productions.

On this platform, users can submit, view, and add overlaid commentary on videos. Bilibili uses Adobe Flash or HTML5 player to play user-submitted videos hosted by either itself or third-party sources.

Ownership of Emon Animation

Bilibili has now bought over Emon Animation Company, the animation company responsible for several titles such as Hitori no ShitaThe Outcast, A Centaur’s LifeTo Be Hero, Spiritpact, and The Silver Guardian. Apart from being the main studio, Emon Animation has also played supporting roles in projects such as Attack on Titan and Ulysses: Jeanne d’Arc and the Alchemist Knight. 

In 2016, Emon Animation acquired the majority shares- 51% of Artland Animation Studio. However, it wasn’t exactly a good business move as Artland Studio closed down the next year. Emon Animation was founded in 2015, becoming a subsidiary of Haoliners culture media.

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Bilibili & US Anime Companies

In March 2019, a collaboration was formed between American company, Funimation, and the Chinese Bilibili. They announced a partnership to acquire anime licenses together and both companies are jointly acquiring licenses “over the next few years,” including IP rights for broadcast television, video-on-demand, electronic sell-through, home entertainment, gaming, and merchandise in the United States and China.

America’s very own Sony Corporation bought 17.3 million shares of Bilibili in 2020, valued at 4.98% of the Chinese company’s stock. Bilibili has recently been embroiled in a gender-based controversy attributed to the Mushoku Tensei TV anime, which has led to some sponsors boycotting the streaming service. Nevertheless, the Chinese company seems to be doing fine at the moment.

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