KCON in Mexico
CJ E&M, one of Korea's leading integrated entertainment and media groups, announced on March 19 that the KCON 2017 Mexico, which was held at the Mexico City Arena for two days from the 17th to 18th, ended with a great fanfare. A total of 33,000 people from neighboring South American countries, such as Argentina, Peru and Colombia, as well as Mexico visited the event to experience Korean culture.
This year’s KCON, an annual global Hallyu convention held since 2012, started in Latin America, which is emerging as the base of hallyu. Hallyu, which began in China and Asian countries, has been expanding to North America and now South America. Considering the high growth rate of 7.1 percent in the Mexican content market and the expected market size of 43 trillion won (US$38.02 billion) in 2018, the KCON is expected to help hallyu continue and active and contribute to related-industry economic effects.
CJ E&M, which has been seeking to ways to continue and expand hallyu by adding new hosting places every year, planned customized conventions by local culture at the KCON 2017 Mexico in order to spread the popularity of K-pop to K-lifestyle. During the daytime, the company run beauty, food and Korean language workshops after inviting an individual YouTube creator, who is powerful in the Americas, as well as dance workshops, which were popular among hallyu fans who love K-pop. It also had gaming programs based on hallyu to help visitors enjoy and communicate together.
At the night, eight popular K-pop artists and bands made a grand finale with performance – Bangtan Boys, Eric Nam, EXID and NCT127 on the 17th and Astro, Infinite H, Monsta X and Red Velvet on the 18th. The audience, who was packed into the concert hall with 10,000 seats for two days, sang along in Korean and danced rising from seats.
José Randon, a reporter at TV Azteca, the second-largest mass media company in Mexico, said at the event, “It was very impressive to see various programs, in addition to K-pop concerts, to discuss Korean TV series and make Korean cosmetics products while enjoying Korean foods. If the KCON takes place in Mexico again, the venue will be larger.”
Meanwhile, CJ E&M will extend the venue of the KCON from the United States and Japan and to Australia this year, following Mexico.
The next KCON will be held at the Makuhari Messe in Chiba, Japan, on May 19 to 21, at the Prudential Center in New York on June 23 to 24, at the LA Convention Center in Los Angeles on August 18 to 20, and in Australia in September.