Japan Expo, an annual summer convention dedicated to Japanese pop culture and held in Paris, will move to California next summer.
According to U.S. anime news site Anime News Network, SEFA Event, which operates the convention, has set up SEFA Entertainment in the United States with Sean Chiochankitmun serving as CEO.
The U.S. event aims to attract between 12,000 and 15,000 visitors.
Launched in 1999, Japan Expo features anime, manga, videogames, music, fashion and other aspects of Japanese pop culture.
The 2011 event attracted 190,000 visitors, making it one of the largest events of its kind held in Europe.
In recognition of its promotion of Japanese pop culture, Japan Expo won the Foreign Minister's Award in 2009 and the Life Achievement Award at the 16th AMD Awards in 2011.
This year, the expo was held July 5-8 at the Paris-Nord Villepinte Exhibition Center. All-girl idol group Momoiro Clover Z, manga giant Naoki Urasawa and many others made guest appearances.
With the success of the Japan Expo, SEFA Event has hosted similar events in Belgium. It remains to be seen what the reaction will be in the United States.
Anime Expo, the largest U.S. anime convention held in California, attracts almost double the number of attendees compared to the Japan Expo.
Japan Expo will face tough competitors in the United States because similar events such as AM2, Pacific Media Expo, FanimeCon, Sakura-Con and J-Pop Summit Festival are held on the West Coast.
Chiochankitmun had served as head of the Otakon convention, the second largest anime convention in the United States held in Baltimore.
Visit Japan Expo's website at (http://www.japan-expo.com/en/).
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