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 Post subject: Japanese pro earnings
Post #1 Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 3:45 am 
Oza

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I don't recall the 2018 pro earnings for Japan being mentioned yet, so here they are (converted to US dollars):

1. Iyama Yuta US$ 1,329,582
2. Ichiriki Ryo 466,993
3. Cho U 375,632
4. Yamashita Keigo 297,100
5. Shibano Toramaru 201,449
6. Fujisawa Rina 198,115
7. Kyo Kagen 183,553
8. Kono Rin 169,150
9. Hane Naoki 115,320
10. Motoki Katsuya 112,955

It is the 8th year in a row Iyama has topped the list, and so he seems set for life. But earnings for 10th place look abysmally low. Remember these are peak earnings. Even top players can face a huge drop once they are in, say, their thirties.

Obviously there are alternative sources of income for the also-rans, notably teaching. I know one female pro who has never been remotely near playing in a (women's) title match but who insists she makes much more money than she would from any other profession. She teaches people like managing directors.

Assuming Japanese average earnings in go are still significantly ahead of Chinese and Korean pros, I suspect it's also true to say that Chinese pros are closing the gap a bit but in Korea the gap is widening alarmingly.

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Post #2 Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 4:05 am 
Gosei

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So what exactly is included in these figures (obviously earnings from teaching are not)?

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 Post subject: Re: Japanese pro earnings
Post #3 Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 4:27 am 
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As a reference, Ke Jie's prize money from year 2018 is approximately 7,100,000 CNY, which is about $1,048,000

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 Post subject: Re: Japanese pro earnings
Post #4 Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:46 am 
Honinbo

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John Fairbairn wrote:
Assuming Japanese average earnings in go are still significantly ahead of Chinese and Korean pros, I suspect it's also true to say that Chinese pros are closing the gap a bit but in Korea the gap is widening alarmingly.


Instead of speculating, let's look at the numbers.

Here are stats for Korean pros (these numbers are for prize money), according to this site: https://www.msn.com/ko-kr/news/sports/1 ... ar-BBRKqTV

The article, of course, lists earnings in won. I added conversion to USD:

Park Jungwan 9d: 1,208,500,000 KRW ($1,077,579.47)
Shin Jin Suh 9d: 570,000,000 KRW ($508,277.55)
Kim Jiseok 9d: 455,000,000 KRW ($405,730.32)

Choi Jeong 9d (top female earner): 354,000,000 KRW ($315,667.11)

Lee Sedol 9d: 301,000,000 KRW ($268,406.21)
Byun Sangil 9d, Kang Dongyun 9d, Park Younghun 9d: Each broke 200,000,000 KRW ($178,343.00)
Kim Chae Young 5d, Shin Minjun 9d, Oh Yujin 6d 104,000,000 ($92,736.28)

Excluding the above, around 16 people, including Choi Cheolhan 9d, Na Hyun 9d, and Kim Myeonghun 6d broke 100,000,000 KRW ($89,169.50)

Last year, average for top 10 peple was around 394,000,000 KRW ($351,327.83)
For top 30 was around 191,000,000 KRW ($170,313.74)
For top 50 ~129,000,000 KRW ($115,028.66)
For top 100 ~72,000,000 KRW ($64,202.04)

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 Post subject: Re: Japanese pro earnings
Post #5 Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:10 pm 
Gosei

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It seems that players who can manage to win big tournaments often enough can amass a lot of money. But these players are a small percentage of the pro players overall. Teaching was mentioned as another source of income. If the size of the amateur population is declining it would seem that income over all from teaching would also be declining. Some pros own (or work for) go clubs (gokaisho in Japanese). In Japan some companies hire pros to teach in the company go club. In the past, go pros with name recognition could make money by turning out books for amateurs (yet another "Sure Win Handicap go" or the like), but, as we know, the market for go books is shrinking. Everything seems to be in decline. Not a happy forecast :(

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 Post subject: Re: Japanese pro earnings
Post #6 Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:09 pm 
Honinbo

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gowan wrote:
It seems that players who can manage to win big tournaments often enough can amass a lot of money. But these players are a small percentage of the pro players overall. Teaching was mentioned as another source of income. If the size of the amateur population is declining it would seem that income over all from teaching would also be declining. Some pros own (or work for) go clubs (gokaisho in Japanese). In Japan some companies hire pros to teach in the company go club. In the past, go pros with name recognition could make money by turning out books for amateurs (yet another "Sure Win Handicap go" or the like), but, as we know, the market for go books is shrinking. Everything seems to be in decline. Not a happy forecast :(


IMO, things don't have to be on the decline with new technologies - things just need to change. With technology, the average amateur has access to strong bots that can give good analysis on games, perhaps to the detriment of some pros. At the same time, technology provides pros (or others skilled at go) a wide audience of people to teach over the internet. There's opportunity to profit from that, even financially - it just isn't the same model we're used to. Maybe it means blogs - maybe it means YouTube channels.

When the market changes, we have to change, too. Kodak is a good example of this - they had dominance in the camera market, but when technology changed things, they didn't adapt.

Don't be like kodak:

Image

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Post #7 Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 2:48 pm 
Honinbo
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Quote:
1. US$ 1,329,582
Does Nihon Kiin (or Kansai Kiin) get a cut ?
What's the approx. income tax, national tax, local tax at this level ?

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 Post subject: Re: Japanese pro earnings
Post #8 Posted: Sat Mar 09, 2019 8:11 pm 
Dies in gote

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Nihon-Kiin take a cut from pros that became one through special measures, like Sumire, Antti, and majority of woman pros, until they reach 3p and join the "full status" pros. It is half the fight money from the first game of each tournament. If they manage to win, fight money from the second game onward are all theirs.
For those earning $1 mil, marginal income tax rate is 55% (45% national, 10% local).
The problem of go pros in Japan is that there are too many of them (around 400) due to their status being protected until they retire. This has been a issue for some decades. On the other hand, Shogi pros are required to retire if they drop out of the bottom rung of Meijin tournament preliminary classes and cannot come back for 10 years or if they have turned 60 and cannot come back. For this reason, Shogi pros number at 100+ and have a decent salary.


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