AfreecaTV: The Godfather of Streaming
(9 pages of text)
AfreecaTV Co. Ltd. (AfreecaTV) was a pioneer in the business of live video streaming, as well as in using voluntary donations as a monetization strategy. In August 2020, AfreecaTV’s co-chief executive officer (CEO) and its largest shareholder, was facing a strategic crossroads. After battling global live-streaming giant and Amazon subsidiary Twitch to a standstill in AfreecaTV’s domestic Korean market, the co-CEO had to decide whether to pursue several risky strategic initiatives, including moving into foreign markets like the United States, further developing the company’s video-on-demand service, expanding advertising on the platform, and generating new, proprietary content (e.g., the company’s own K-pop group). He wondered which would be the best direction to take AfreecaTV in the coming years.
This case is appropriate for undergraduate- and graduate-level courses on technology and on business, corporate, and entrepreneurial strategy; pay-what-you-want (PWYW); and name-your-own-price (NYOP) pricing. The case has been used in both synchronous (live streaming or face-to-face) and asynchronous (online) formats. The teaching note is designed to facilitate teaching to different student populations and in different formats. After working through the case and assignment questions, students will be able to do the following:
- Explain the donation-based business model, especially as pertains to social media.
- Identify both economic and non-economic benefits and success factors for influencers on social media platforms.
- Analyze an online platform’s monetization strategy, and determine the degree to which it is scalable.
- Enumerate the strengths and weaknesses of community as a strategic resource.
- Evaluate the corporate strategy of an online platform.
Information, Media & Telecommunications
South Korea, Medium, 2020
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