Real Draw, the AI-based webtoon production Korean startup founded in June 2023, has announced a significant milestone in its journey, securing approximately 2.2 billion won ($1.6 million) in a Series A investment round led by Altos Ventures, with participation from Yoon Min Creative Investment Foundation.
Real Draw aims to revolutionize the webtoon drawing process by enhancing efficiency and supporting large-scale, high-quality webtoon production. The company, under the leadership of CEO Choi Sang-gyu, has focused on leveraging artificial intelligence to not only streamline the drawing process but also understand and express emotions in the artistic style of various creators.
The investment will facilitate Real Draw’s expansion plans, including collaborations with famous artists and global-level production through IP remakes. The company intends to grow into a global content studio by providing technology-based solutions to the challenges faced by the webtoon industry.
Choi Sang-gyu, the founder and CEO of Real Draw, brings a wealth of experience from his key role at Watcha, where he led webtoon production and development. His background as an art director and technology leader at NCSoft further strengthens Real Draw’s position in the market.
The webtoon market has experienced substantial growth, with a notable profit increase. According to Sensor Tower, the global comic book app market is expected to reach 600 billion won ($456 million) this year. Naver’s webtoon platform alone has seen a remarkable growth of 87 times, reaching 2.0255 trillion won ($1.5 billion) in profit over the last decade.
The dynamics of the webtoon market are evolving, with changes in the creative process and a shift towards collaborative studio groups. Real Draw aims to address the challenges faced by artists, such as maintaining content quality and meeting deadlines by improving the efficiency of the production environment.
Choi Sang-gyu expressed his gratitude for the investment, stating, “Having worked in the webtoon industry for many years, I have experienced firsthand that the most important thing is the creativity and rights of writers.” He emphasized Real Draw’s commitment to using AI to elevate webtoon creation globally and aspire to become a content studio on par with Pixar. Moonseok Oh, Partner at Altos Ventures, highlighted the labor-intensive nature of the creative process in the webtoon market and sees Real Draw is a company poised to overcome these challenges through technology-driven quality improvement.
- Toonsquare Launches Innovative Webtoon Creation Software Powered by Generative AI For Global Creators
- Apple teams up with Korean webtoon startup to bring popular comics to Apple Books
- Korean Webtoon companies that are giving the audience addictive content
- Korean startup Toonit makes it possible to create webtoons with no illustration experience