Korean entertainment site Soompi has been acquired by Viki in a deal rumored to be less than US $10M. Viki was a startup that was purchased by Rakuten in a huge US $200M deal. This time, Viki is on the other end of the table and the divestor is Crunchyroll. The combination of Viki and Soompi will make the company the largest English platform for discussion and news on Korean entertainment.
Korean dramas or K-dramas, K-pop, and anything to do with Korean entertainment in general have a huge following all across Asia, as evidenced by the number of Soompi subscribers: over 7 million. Soompi is maintained by a team of merely ten people, who will now join Viki. The two websites have unique features, with Soompi focused on K-pop while Viki more focused on K-dramas and movies.
Although the sites will remain operating separately, the plan is to utilize Soompi’s framework to apply to new markets, such as South American countries. The company will continue to apply the model of free advertised content with the option of removing ads for a monthly fee.