Who will be the winner of the Korean OTT market?
Global players of over-the-top (OTT) services that viewed Netflix's great success in South Korea are entering the Korean OTT market. South Korea's endangered OTT operators are planning on making large-scale investments.
As Netflix has achieved great success in the Korean media market, global OTT players are also continuing to make inroads into Korea.
Disney+, which is considered a competitor of Netflix, plans to start its service in Korea in the second half of this year. Apple's TV platform "Apple TV+," "HBO Max," which has produced popular global dramas such as Game of Thrones, is also reportedly planning to enter the South Korean market.
The reason why foreign companies are actively targeting the Korean OTT market is that it is growing rapidly. According to the Korea Communications Commission, Korea's OTT market, which was only $ 90 million in 2012, grew to $ 700 million last year.
Existing players are stepping up the competition this year. Netflix, which invested $ 300 million in Korea’s OTT market last year, plans to invest $ 500 million this year to attract Korean viewers.
Wavve, a Korean OTT platform, announced its plan to invest $ 900 million in producing original content by 2025. Experts predict that KT, which is operating 'Seezn', will invest more than $ 350 million.
TVING, a joint venture between CJ ENM and JTBC, plans to invest $ 350 million by 2023 to produce content and strengthen OTT, while Kakao TV plans to invest $ 260 million. Coupang, which entered the OTT market through Coupang Play, is also reportedly planning to invest about $ 80 million in OTT this year.
Amid the expected fierce battle in the Korean OTT market, each OTT's strategy has become important. Players can either provide quality content or compete with the amount of content. Or the original content that is only serviced by its own OTT may be a strategy. Each OTT should carefully map out its strategy to meet its goals.