An anonymous reader shares a report: When top anime streaming platform Crunchyroll was first gaining popularity as a pirated-video site in the mid-2000s, Japanese animation was considered a niche form of entertainment, appealing mainly to enthusiasts known as otaku. Today, it’s a $20 billion industry spanning streaming, games and merchandise, and the company’s hit series, such as One Piece and Demon Slayer, have drawn millions of US and European subscribers. Crunchyroll, now owned by Sony Group, is setting its sights on India as a major growth market — one that could help the industry further expand from a made-in-Japan subculture into a mainstream and global phenomenon.

The company, founded in 2006 by graduates of the University of California at Berkeley, started off as an anime-sharing site. It eventually began streaming only legitimate content, helped by investment from venture capitalists including former News Corp. President Peter Chernin and ownership by AT&T’s

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