Joanne Waage is the general manager of Crunchyroll, the world’s most popular anime brand with more than 50 million registered users and over two million subscribers. As general manager, Waage oversees global content licensing, operations, monetization, marketing, and brand strategy for the platform.
Waage joins Crunchyroll from Rakuten, where she was the CEO of Rakuten Viki, a premiere global streaming service for fans of Asian dramas, and Soompi, a leading global K-pop news and fansite.
Waage has dedicated her career to bringing great content to viewers around the world in new and innovative ways. During her time at Rakuten, Waage led Viki and Soompi through their biggest years, hitting strong double-digit growth in both revenue and subscribers and securing Viki’s spot as the #1 global provider of Asian dramas. During Waage’s tenure, she pushed the company into original production, launching six Viki Originals between 2017 and 2018 and securing a deal with Skybound Entertainment (creators of “The Walking Dead”) to co-produce the global series, “Five Year.” Because of Waage’s passion for super-serving fandom audiences, she also led the Viki team to launch Learn Mode, where fans can learn Korean or Mandarin (Japanese pending), alongside Created, Viki’s influencer and branded content arm and Viki’s K-Beauty store on Rakuten.com.
Prior to joining Viki, Waage was senior vice president of business development and programming at MobiTV, the first company in the world to deliver live television to cell phones. At MobiTV, Waage led all video programming strategy, content licensing, media-related business development and content operations.
Waage has also held key positions in sales and marketing at Viacom and production for MTV, VH1, FX, PBS and Lifetime. Waage holds a degree from Columbia University in New York.