Shueisha is a major publisher in Japan and the largest manga publisher in the world with a market share in Japan of 30%. It belongs to the Hitotsubashi Group, a holding structure that owns the Shogakukan, Shueisha and Hakusensha publishing groups headquartered in Tokyo.
The company was founded in 1926 as the entertainment-related publishing division of Japanese publisher Shogakukan. The following year Shueisha became a separate, independent company.
Shueisha's Jump Comics division is a large Manga publisher. Shueisha later founded Hakusensha, which went on to become another successful Japanese publisher. Shueisha operates a number of imprints including Homesha.
Many titles published in its Weekly Shonen Jump have enjoyed circulation of over 1 million copies in graphic novel form. Dragon Ball has sold over 150 million copies overall and One Piece has sold over 140 million. Shueisha, together with Shogakukan, owns Viz Media, one of the major publishers of manga in the United States. VIZ Media is based in San Francisco, CA and is one of the most comprehensive and innovative companies in manga publishing, animation and entertainment licensing of Japanese content.
Translations have come to play an important role at Shueisha in recent years. The Japanese group translated work from authors such as Marcel Proust, Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clézio, Samuel Huntington, Sandra Brown, and Camilla Läckberg.
Analysis & Key Developments
Revenues at Shueisha have been on a modest, continual decline over the past five years. Profits were stabilized in 2013 after a sharp decline in 2011 and made a turnaround in 2014, when profits accounted for 3.76 billion JPY, up from 3.18 billion JPY in 2013, and rose to 4.13 billion JPY in 2015.
Shueisha is part of the Hitotsubashi Group, which includes several other publishing companies including Shogakukan, which is headquartered next to Shueisha.
Shogakukan has operated ShoPro with Shueisha and Hakusensha since 1967 to distribute, license and merchandise many of the most popular magazines and comic books in Japan. Licensing partners include VIZ Media.
Shueisha made a strong effort to increase its international presence in 2013. In a promotional campaign for the US, Shueisha claimed to have 345 million international readers for its manga series, and cited Eiichiro Oda’s One Piece series as the most popular manga series in the world.
Yaoi, a romance Manga especially popular among women, was started under VIZ Media’s SuBlime label in the US, in a joint effort with Animate Ltd. and Libre Publishing Co.
ShoPro is a powerful tool for Shueisha to monetize some of Japan’s best-recognized intellectual property both domestically and aboroad.
Shueisha launched the Jump Next Generation Manga Grand Prix in fall 2013 to encourage new talent. The competition is based on digital submissions and the top prize is 1 million JPY (or 10,000 USD).
Shueisha launched an eponymous e-book retailer in 2013.
S-Manga.net is a portal site with coverage of Shueisha's comics, on-sale dates for remixes and magazines, media adaptation information, introductions on new releases and content samples. Shueisha also operates several paid-subscription sites, notably VYJ and Shupure.net.
Shueisha is known for the Dragon Ball and One Piece manga titles, which are licensed in over 35 countries with a further reach through animated, live-action and game versions. Shueisha's bestselling novels including Jiro Asada's Poppoya (The Stationmaster), which was adapted into a film; Keigo Higashino's Byakuyako; and Hebi ni Piasu (Snakes and Earrings), the debut novel of the 20-year-old Hitomi Kanehara. The books are widely read in Asia.