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Kakao launched a new virtual K-Pop group called MAVE, and the first single has already generated 20m streams on Spotify

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Kakao Leisure, the leisure division of South Korean web firm Kakao Corp., is doubling down on its metaverse push with the launch of a brand new four-member digital Ok-Pop woman group known as MAVE.

Kakao launched MAVE in January by way of its Metaverse Entertainment three way partnership with South Korean cell recreation developer Netmarble. Metaverse Leisure was founded in August 2021.

The group’s members are Siu, Zena, Tyra, and Marty, who’re offered as human-like avatars with natural-looking actions and facial expressions.

Reuters says the members can converse 4 languages: Korean, English, French and Bahasa, though they aren’t in a position to answer prompts and solely depend on scripts ready by people.

Aside from MAVE, Metaverse Leisure additionally developed one other digital character known as RINA, described as a 22-year-old with a “free-spirited life-style who loves style and music and is obsessed with what she likes.”

RINA already has 32,600 followers on Instagram, which was launched on March 29, 2022, and has amassed 2.3 million likes and 138,000 followers on TikTok.

MAVE and RINA, at first look, look so sensible that web customers, at first look, could not be capable to distinguish them from people.

“Once I first noticed Mave, it was a bit complicated to inform whether or not they have been people or digital characters… As a result of I exploit metaverse platforms with my associates usually, I really feel like I might turn into their fan,” Han Su-min, a 19-year-old in Seoul, was quoted by Reuters as saying.

MAVE’s debut single Pandora was launched simply two months in the past and the music video for the observe has already racked up greater than 20 million views on YouTube they usually even have over 172,000 subscribers on the platform.

The observe has additionally already generated over 20 million streams on Spotify alone.

Metaverse Leisure says MAVE are “Ok-meta idols who will create a brand new wave within the period of KPOP and the metaverse”.

“MAVE: consists of 4 ladies dwelling sooner or later world known as IDYPIA, a utopia everybody dreamed of. They journey to 2023 to get better misplaced feelings,” based on MAVE’s official web site.

“They’ve uncovered secrets and techniques hidden in IDYPIA, an ideal utopia everybody has dreamed of, and are about to embark on a journey to get better the misplaced feelings of mankind with out hesitation or worry.”

Over a month in the past, Kakao Leisure introduced the upcoming international launch of a webtoon based mostly on MAVE on the corporate’s international platforms.

The webtoon will depict MAVE’s universe and discover different realities, stated the corporate.

The webtoon will launch throughout the first half of the 12 months on Tapas in North America, Kakao Piccoma in Japan, and Kakao Webtoon in Thailand, Taiwan, and Indonesia.

Metaverse Leisure describes itself as an organization that develops digital human manufacturing, digital idol administration, and visible particular results.

MAVE is the JV’s first challenge, launched in January of this 12 months, suggesting that it took Kakao and Netmarble over a 12 months to develop the digital Ok-Pop group.

Kakao has invested 12 billion South Korean received (approx. USD $9.2 million) in Metaverse Leisure, Reuters reported.

Chu Ji-yeon, who heads Metaverse Leisure, informed the information outlet that MAVE is an “ongoing” challenge to discover new enterprise alternatives and discover methods round technological challenges.

Metaverse Leisure is only one of Kakao’s investments within the metaverse area. 

Again in June, Kakao unveiled its metaverse service, Kakao Universe, to attach international customers who share the identical pursuits.

“We’re concentrating on 99% of customers globally, so KakaoTalk, which has been based mostly on acquaintances thus far, will sooner or later join folks with the identical pursuits. We determined to name the world of individuals linked by way of related pursuits ‘Kakao Universe,’” Kakao CEO Namkoong Whon was quoted by The Korea Instances as saying on the time.

Final week, Kakao Leisure revealed its plans to develop within the US and globally, teaming up with Sony Music‘s Columbia Information through Kakao Leisure’s America division.

In South Korea, Kakao not too long ago launched a young supply to amass as much as 35% of SM Leisure for about USD $960 million, after beforehand agreeing to purchase 9.05% of SM in February. (SM rival HYBE has dropped out of its takeover bid, revealing on Friday, March 24, that it’s promoting its complete stake in SM price $435 million.)

In January, Kakao Leisure secured 1.2 trillion South Korea Received (approx $966m) funding from what it stated are “main sovereign wealth funds”.

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