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Chinese media mogul eyes Korean market

Content Media, a U.K.-based distributor of films and other media content, is hoping to use Korea as a jump-off for Asian expansion. 

Content Media’s China unit chairman Bruno Wu. Seoul IR
Content Media’s China unit chairman Bruno Wu. Seoul IR

In a recent interview with The Korea Herald, chief of Content Media’s Chinese operations Bruno Wu said the company would roll out measures to market media contents developed in Korea across the global market.

“Through measures such as investing in Korean production firms, (the company) plans to raise the standards of Korean content and to distribute it in the global market,” Wu said.

Content Media, which on Monday applied for review to get listed on Korea’s KOSDAQ market, already has experience selling local content in overseas markets. If successful, Content Media will become the first European firm to be listed on a Korean stock market.

The hit reality show “Grandpas over Flowers” airing on local cable network tvN was sold through Content Media to the U.S. network NBC. The show follows four aging actors who travel overseas with the help of a younger actor.

The U.S. network is working on a remake of the program tentatively titled “Better Late Than Never.”

Wu is one of the most influential figures in China’s growing entertainment industry, having founded the Seven Stars Entertainment and Media Group. He is also the husband of Yang Lan, who has been dubbed “China’s Oprah.”

The group, which Wu founded with his wife, holds stakes in more than 60 media-related organizations ranging from production companies to broadcasting stations.

Wu also holds 20 percent of Content Media, making him the second-largest shareholder of the U.K.-based company.

While Content Media formed the partnership with Wu to enter the Chinese market, the company’s decision to be listed on the Korean market is said to be part of its ambitions for the wider Asian market.

The U.K. firm has laid out plans to market Korean content in the international market, as well as making investments in local drama and film production companies.

The company is eyeing the Vietnamese market as its next destination after Korea. 

By Suk Gee-hyun (monicasuk@heraldcorp.com)
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