Wattpad, the storytelling incubator where budding authors can get their work turned into movies, had been acquired by Naver.
The deal is reportedly worth over half a billion dollars.
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If you haven’t heard of Wattpad, you may have come across some of its work on Hulu, Netflix, or other streaming services. The platform helps authors turn their work into movies for the Big and Small screens. Some recent productions include The Kissing Booth, Light as a Feather, and After We Collided.
Now Wattpad will be looking to expand its service after being bought by Naver – the South Korean Internet giant who also owns Line and Webtoon – in a deal reported to be over $600 million.
A new chapter in our story is about to be written, and we're not writing it alone… We’re thrilled to announce our board has approved an agreement to be acquired by Naver, home of @webtoonofficial! Read the exciting news → https://t.co/xgwGtD4nVz pic.twitter.com/fzoIJyTWrp
— Wattpad (@wattpad) January 19, 2021
And Webtoon seems to be the reason why Naver invested in Wattpad. Webtoon already works a lot like Wattpad, as an online publishing portal that allows artists to upload their own work and hope to see them turned into TV and anime adaptations.
“With the backing of Korean technology giant, NAVER, WEBTOON, and Wattpad will collaborate to create a stronger and connected ecosystem across visual and textual storytelling content, with a combined reader base of over 160 million monthly users globally. WEBTOON’s innovative monetization model and Wattpad’s massive library of diverse stories will provide each prospective affiliate with new levers for growth, creating a stronger foundation to fund an aspiring generation of young, creative talent.”
However, Wattpad co-founder Allen Lau told BetaKit that his company will continue to operate independently.
Naver is a South Korean Internet giant, known for its popular search engine that competes with the likes of Google and its social media products like Line that have helped make Naver the dominant social media company in Japan.
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