Business News Deals Labels & Publishers

Universal and Big Hit widen partnership, set to launch “global” K-pop group

By | Published on Thursday 18 February 2021

Big Hit and Universal

The Universal Music Group and South Korean entertainment firm Big Hit have announced a new wide-ranging partnership. It will see the two companies work together on various projects, including launching a new K-pop group for the global market.

The news follows that announcement last week that UMG had invested in KBYK Live – the livestreaming company co-founded by Big Hit last year – and its VenewLive livestreaming platform.

As part of the new deal, Big Hit will launch a new joint venture label in partnership with Universal’s Geffen imprint. Together they will hold global auditions for members of a new boyband, who will be managed under the K-pop system that has brought Big Hit success,

Universal will also explore opportunities for its existing artists on Big Hit’s Weverse direct-to-fan platform.

“Our two companies indeed share values and visions in that we both pursue constant innovations and are committed to providing our fans with genuine music and content of the highest and uncompromising level of quality”, says Big Hit CEO Bang Si-Hyuk. “In this sense, I strongly believe that UMG and Big Hit will create a synergy that will rewrite the global music history”.

Universal CEO Lucian Grainge adds: “With their innovative approach to developing artists and embracing new technology, Big Hit has become one of the most dynamic companies in music entertainment. We’re THRILLED to be working together as we launch a new joint venture between our companies that will further accelerate K-pop as a global cultural phenomenon”.

Auditions for the new boyband are set to begin in 2022 via a TV show being launched in partnership with “a major US media partner”. So that’s something to look forward to.