Shinsegae's liquor distributor wing picks virtual show host YT to promote Japanese-style cocktail

By Kim Joo-heon Posted : June 28, 2023, 18:00 Updated : June 28, 2023, 23:45

[Courtesy of Shinsegae L&B]

SEOUL -- Virtual social media influencer Young Twenty was selected by the liquor distribution wing of South Korea's retail giant Shinsegae to promote highball. Through the virtual human with some 454,000 Instagram followers, the South Korean company aims to also sell side dishes for the alcoholic drink created using a popular whisky "Evan Williams Black." 
Young Twenty, also known by her nickname YT, created by Shinsegae and Pulse9, a domestic AI graphics company, is a twenty-year-old woman talented in dance. She is interested in various types of sports including skateboarding, surfing, and virtual reality boxing. Since March 2023, the virtual influencer has worked as a show host for, the online shopping mall of Shinsegae.
Shinsegae L&B said in a statement on June 28 that YT would be used to promote a highball brand and five different skewers. Anyone can watch the virtual show host's content on Shinsegae L&B's official Instagram. Evan Williams Black, a 43-degree whisky made of corn, was used as the base of the alcoholic beverage. The new highball is available in 19 stores including the ones in the western port city of Incheon and Ilsan northeast of Seoul. 
Highball is a Japanese-style alcoholic cocktail that is based on an alcoholic spirit and a larger proportion of non-alcoholic ingredients such as soda and lemon juice. In South Korea, it is one of the most favored cocktails among young consumers in their 20s and 30s because it is easy to make and come up with unique and tasty combinations. Whisky is widely used as the base alcohol of a highball. 

Whisky, which is more expensive compared to beer and traditional Korean liquor called "Soju," is enjoyed by many South Koreans. Sales of whisky at Shinsegae Department Store franchises in the first quarter of 2023 increased by 65 percent from a year ago. About half of whisky consumers were in their 20s and 30s.

Many artificial humans are active as show hosts and models in South Korea. Earlier this month, 29-year-old virtual model Lucy appeared in a live commerce show to promote artworks created by Noh Jun, a sculptor known for sculpting human-like animal characters. In December 2021, virtual influencer Rozy became a promotion model for GS Retail, the operator of convenience store franchise GS25. 
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