AFA 12 Culture Japan Booth

POSTED BY DANNY CHOO On Tue 2012/11/20 10:10 JST in Culture Japan Booth

Trying to squeeze in time to write stuff amidst the barrage of meetings that I have while still in Singapore so will do the wall-of-photos posts - starting with the Culture Japan/Mirai Suenaga booth at Asia's biggest anime event Anime Festival Asia 2012.

As this was the first time we had a booth where we sold our own stuff, we had no idea how much we would sell so was conservative on how much stuff we made.
We've made the decision to manufacture as many of our own products as possible for many reasons:-

  • Licensed products do not really make a profit unless the volumes are very large.
  • Difficult to control branding and quality of licensed products.
  • Want to learn how to manufacture, price and distribute products on a global scale.

But on top of manufacturing costs, there was shipping costs to Singapore, booth space, construction, staff and miscellaneous expenses, our costs ended up being quite high. Also, because we are making stuff for the first time, we dont have great unit costs which do tend to get lower over time as we make new contacts with factories. We had to sell most of our stuff just to break even too.

Nevertheless, this project was going to be a great learning experience even if we made a loss. We learned loads about logistics, international taxes, storage and wot not.

We ended up selling over 1000 Moekana T-shirts, several hundred posters and Mirai Carry Cases - it seems that Mirai-chan's popularity is growing! So much so that I noticed there were quite a few folks who knew who Mirai was but didn't know who I was - this is great because it enables me to be behind the lines instead of front line all the time.

We sold most of our goods on the first day - I was shocked to see a queue of folks going around the booth and zig-zagging back n forth a few times - please forgive us for keeping everybody waiting ><

Comrades at Nitroplus grew Super Sonico's popularity grew mainly through merchandise. I've never had enough revenue to manufacture products up until recently so I grew Mirai-chan's brand through collaborations. I've always wanted to own Mirai merchandise myself which is why after saving a load of cash from the TV production I started to do make some - but only products that I would personally use myself ^^

I would like to thank everybody who came along to our booth to visit and/or get some goodies - if you did, would love to see you share your loot on Facebook or Twitter, Instragram etc - it would help Mirai-chan in her mission to continue to spread Japanese culture worldwide!
If you do have some photos uploaded somewhere then paste the links in the comments below.

Also thanks to our team members who gathered from afar to help out! Also thanks to Yukino for the loan of her Itasha and Sticker no Tenchi for wrapping it. Did I nearly forget to mention thanks to Kodomut, Reiji and Solomon for taking these photos?

Going to leave you with the wall of photos while I go and prep more AFA posts!

For those of you who missed it, here are the products we had on sale. First up, some deck cases for your brand new Moekana cards.

And these are the first two moekana T-shirts in what I call the Danny Choo collection. The response for the shirts was absolutely fantastic, and we will definitely be making much more of these in time to come.

We had some large A2 sized posters too.