Their companies were either on the brink of bankruptcy or no-names before these Kpop idols.
Kpop stans always pay close attention to entertainment agencies, as these companies decide and manage all activities and opportunities of their favorite idols. Basically, Kpop idols and their agencies are in a partnership with mutual benefits, and if the idols grow, then the company will develop with them. In fact, some idols became so big, their companies earned such huge profits they started to consume others.
Before becoming HYBE Labels, this entertainment company was known as Big Hit Entertainment. Prior to BTS, this agency was under heavy debts due to the utter failure of their previous girl group GLAM. At the time, management even wanted to delay the debut of BTS and made RM (previously Rap Monster) a soloist.
However, the company decided to pull out all their resources and created the BTS we know today. Not befalling Big Hit’s expectations, BTS has now become world-famous, with great influence on both the Kpop industry and the economy of South Korea.
In 2021, Big Hit Entertainment finally became HYBE Labels, and started to purchase various competitors like Source Music, Pledis Entertainment, KOZ Entertainment, and Ithaca Holdings. At the moment, HYBE is the most profitable among all Kpop agencies, with the super successful BTS, as well as other famous artists under their sleeves like SEVENTEEN, TXT, ENHYPHEN, LE SSERAFIM….
SM Entertainment has long been known as one of Kpop’s “Big 3”, and is the company behind multiple famous idols like SNSD, Super Junior, SHINee, DBSK, Red Velvet, aespa, and NCT. However, SM stans will remember the company’s prime time that began after EXO took the stage.
During the golden age of EXO, this boy group accounted for 30-40% of SM’s total profits, and perhaps even more. Thanks to the vast popularity of EXO, SM now owns a super fancy headquarters which is situated right at the heart of Seoul.
Out of all JYP artists, the girl group TWICE is probably the company’s biggest earner. It is rare to see female idols that do well both in physical and digital sales, but TWICE totally nailed it. The group also attracts a staggering number of fans, with their concerts constantly selling out. After TWICE, JYP Entertainment moved from a small street to a major road.
After collaborating with Big Hit Entertainment to debut the girl group GLAM, Source Music, like its partners, also went into bankruptcy, and even had to move into a gloomy basement. However, the appearance of GFRIEND basically saved the company from ruin.
In 2019, Source Music officially moved to a flashy building in Gangnam Seoul, before being absorbed by HYBE. In 2021, GFRIEND officially disbanded to the shock of netizens, and it seemed that despite being their agency’s saviors, GFRIEND’s talents were wasted.
From YG’s establishment to this moment, BIGBANG and BLACKPINK are undoubtedly the top earners of this company. However, before BIGBANG, YG was basically a no-name in the Kpop industry, and the 5 members were shoved into a tiny room. With their astonishing talents, however, the idol group managed to rise and became the king of Kpop, and even YG’s founder admitted that it was BIGBANG that created YG and not the vice versa.
However, in 2019, heavy controversies surrounding this agency’s artists created a huge crisis. During this time, it was BLACKPINK that saved YG Entertainment from crumbling, and their song “Kill This Love” raised both YG’s revenue and its stock price. Now, BLACKPINK contributes the most to YG’s wealth.
Thanks to their talents and popularity, these Kpop idols saved their companies from a sad fate, and this brings great pride to their fandoms.