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Shinsegae ventures into VR game market to promote eco-friendly campaign

By Park Sae-jin Posted : November 14, 2018, 10:48 Updated : November 14, 2018, 10:56

Electric appliances brand Electromart's mascot Electro Man [Electromart's Facebook]

SEOUL -- Chung Yong-jin, the de facto head of South Korean retail giant Shinsegae, who is well known for ingenious ideas, will venture into the virtual reality game market, using a superhero mascot of the group's discount store wing that first appeared in 2015 to attract young customers.

Emart said in a statement Tuesday that it would participate in "G-STAR 2018", an annual three-day gaming exhibition to be held this week in the southern port city of Busan, to operate a booth and showcase games for the first time as a South Korean retailer.

The hypermarket brand will unveil a VR game featuring Electro Man, the mascot of Emart's electric store sub-brand "Electro Mart", and a mobile game featuring cute and adorable characters. Emart joined hands with NCsoft, a leading game creator, and GPM, a VR theme park operator, to develop the VR game.

In the games, players will become the superhero and cute characters to clean up the streets strewn with trash and consume recyclable paper to save the earth. Since a mobile receipt campaign was launched in January last year, Emart has issued more than 200 million digital receipts to save some 12,000 trees and 56 million tons of water.

"This is part of an eco-friendly campaign to attract the mobile-friendly millennial generation with games," an Emart official told Aju News. "We will attract consumers with an easy and fun eco-friendly campaign."

Chung is also interested in the movie market. He said in July that he would create a superhero movie starring his Electro Man character in an effort to diversify Shinsegae's business portfolio. The experimental film would be released in 2020.

His innovative ideas have been materialized into new business opportunities. He built a giant luxury and leisure shopping mall called Starfield, opened a French lifestyle boutique hotel in central Seoul and introduced a fleet of autonomous shopping carts.

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