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Business

Japanese publisher taps Southeast Asia comics market from Malaysia

Left to right: Yoshinori Kodama from the Embassy of Japan, Kadokawa chairman Tsuguhiko Kadokawa, and Yew Chen Han, who holds 20% of Art Square Group, exchange a memento in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday.

KUALA LUMPUR -- Kadokawa, one of Japan's largest publishers, is aiming at tripling the revenue of its 80%-owned comic producer in Malaysia, Art Square Group, through exports to the region.

     The push means Kuala Lumpur will become the publishing group's development hub in the region. Art Square Group already has a dominating presence as the biggest comics content provider in the country. Locally, the Malaysian company is popularly known for its Gempak Starz brand of publications. One of its best-selling comics is Lawak Kampus or "campus joke," a 12-year-old publication that sells about 150,000 copies of each of its volumes. It is currently on its 25th volume.

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