Sales of e3paper’s Madoka Magica seal stamps were so brisk that they’re currently working on stamps based on other anime series.
The company is also considering brining the product to distributors outside of Japan, due to having received a significant number of orders from US and Australia anime fans.
Are we witnessing the advent of a brand new era of moe character goods here? Imagine a world, several years from now, where anime fans all over Japan carry these moe seal stamps to use on legally-binding documents.
In case you haven’t heard, yes, these are actual, useable seal stamps that even the banks will accept.
And, yes, as it turns out, in real life you can actually make a contract with a Kyubey… seal stamp.
Seven illustration designs are available, which may not make sense at first – if only seven designs are available, wouldn’t another person holding a moe seal stamp of the same design as yours be able to impersonate as you?
Getting banks and the relevant authorities to recognise these moe seal stamps was something e3company really wanted to push for. Eventually, they managed to come up with a way – each customer’s initials (Kanji) would be engraved on the side of the seal illustration, making it possible to distinguish between seals belonging to customers who had selected the same design.
Carving a person’s initials on the stamps is entirely optional, of course. It’s only necessary if the intended user decides to seal legally-binding documents with the moe anime stamp.
And although the Madoka Magica seal stamps were the first to be based on an officially licensed anime series, e3paper has actually been making moe seal stamps – based on their own doujinshi designs – for almost a year.
The story behind e3paper’s Itaindou brand of seal stamps
Founded in October 2010, e3paper first started out as a company dealing with website and movie creation, along with the digital distribution of doujinshis. They were also involved with the manga creation software ComiPo, and the inspiration behind these moe seal stamps were a result of discussions – with a seal stamp production company – to create and sell character goods based on ComiPo, e3paper founder Takafumi Nakagawa told ITMedia.
The seal stamp maker reached out to e3paper and asked if they could explore merchandising options based on ComiPo, and initially they wanted to make towels and other such typical character goods.
At some point, e3paper asked if the seal stamp maker if they were willing to consider character goods apart from those based on ComiPo, and what they thought about carving an illustration onto a seal stamp.
As seal stamps were not something affected by fashion trends and apparently did not require a lot of manpower to make, e3paper and their partner thought the risk for this venture was quite low. So they jumped straight in.
The service to make customised moe seal stamps begun in June 2012. Prices for the doujinshi-based stamps start at 1,380 yen for a circle-shaped stamp, and as e3paper was able to work with a number of distinguished doujin artists, the company’s Itaindou brain of illustrated seal stamps have so far sold fairly well.
Although e3paper’s Nakagawa declined to mention actual figures when ITMedia if they could reveal them, he did point to two examples of outstanding demand for the products – the Madoka Magica stamps, which sold out in two hours, and a limited edition “Blanc et noir” item set (includes a seal stamp) based on doujin artist Coffee Kizoku’s designs.
Only 50 sets of the Blanc et noir character goods set was made, and each went for 12,500 yen. The sets were sold out in 20 minutes, and went for as much as 60,000 yen on Yahoo Japan Auctions.
So buying one of these moe seal stamps isn’t just for your own collection. It may even be an investment.
Would you buy one of these Itaindou moe seal stamps, if they were themed after other anime series?
Source: IT Media