Fri, Aug 10, 2012 - Page 3 News List

Comic fair in Taipei attracts exhibitors in droves, but fewer fans

Staff writer, with CNA

Comic book fans scramble to get their hands on merchandise at the 2012 Comic Exhibition in the Taipei World Trade Center on its first day yesterday. The exhibition will run until Tuesday.

Photo: Fang Pin-chao, Taipei Times

An annual comics exhibition opened in Taipei yesterday with the participation of more than 70 publishers, making it the biggest comic exhibition in recent years.

Japanese voice actors are expected to be the main attraction at the event, which features 420 booths.

Muse Communication Co has invited Satoshi Hino and Atsushi Abe, voice actors from the Japanese manga Bakuman, to attend the one-week fair.

Voice actor Sayaka Ohara from Fairy Tail and Kensho Ono and Yuki Ono from Kuroko’s Basketball will also be there to sign autographs and meet fans, the organizers said.

Forty-five graphic artists from Taiwan, China and Japan are also scheduled to meet with fans at the fair.

Hattori Mitsuru, who wrote and illustrated Sankarea, a popular romantic comedy in Japan about a student with a zombie obsession, will also attend the event.

Last year, the six-day fair attracted about 550,000 visitors, generating NT$170 million (US$5.68 million) in sales, the organizers said.

Higher attendance is expected this year, while sales are forecast to reach NT$200 million.

However, Chiu Hsiao-yu (邱小祐), marketing head at Sharp Point Publishing Co, said she was concerned that the crowd on opening day this year seemed to be between 10 and 20 percent smaller than last year.

Tongli Publishing Co marketing vice manager Wu Tzu-yen (吳姿鴈) said comic fans were likely to focus on limited-edition products, such as autographed books.

The company will try to enhance its products’ uniqueness, Wu said.

The event, now in its 13th year, will run through Tuesday at Taipei World Trade Center Exhibition Hall 1.

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