Big Hit takes on Seventeen and NU'EST with Pledis merger
BTS's agency Big Hit Entertainment has become the top shareholder of Pledis Entertainment, welcoming boy bands NU'EST and Seventeen to its family.
"Big Hit Entertainment has acquired shares of Pledis Entertainment, securing its place as the biggest shareholder," Big Hit Entertainment said on Monday.
The move ensures a diversified pool of musicians for Big Hit Entertainment, which has been aiming to expand its multi-label structure since officially joining forces with girl group GFriend's agency Source Music last year.
Since then, the agency has acquired game developer Superb and co-founded Belift Lab with CJ ENM, as a part of its diversification strategy.
K-pop acts flying under the wings of Big Hit Entertainment now include BTS, Tomorrow X Together, GFriend, NU'EST, Seventeen, After School and Kyulkyung.
Although Pledis Entertainment will be managed independently, as it was before the merger, its musicians will receive the same level of professional and detailed training and support from Big Hit as well as access to the agency's global business networks and platforms.
The new additions have already begun communicating with fans through Weverse — a K-pop fan community app developed by Big Hit's affiliate beNX.
Welcoming the new groups into the Big Hit family will allow an immediate and effective expansion of the intelligence property that will lead to a bigger expansion of all affiliated companies and sub-labels of Big Hit Entertainment, according to the agency.
"We are pleased to work alongside Big Hit Entertainment, which is leading the Korean entertainment industry. It will be an opportunity for all the artists and staff members of Pledis to leap into the future," Pledis Entertainment's CEO Han Sung-soo said.
Bang Si-hyuk, CEO of Big Hit Entertainment, said, "We are especially happy to be able to work with CEO Han and the creative team at Pledis. Big Hit and Pledis will communicate through music, grow together and create great synergy."
BY YOON SO-YEON [firstname.lastname@example.org]