Who manages and essentially creates the K-pop sensations we know and love/hate? In K-Pop 101, we like to keep things simple, so we’ll begin with the three biggest agencies in the K-pop world, often referred to as the “Big Three”.
Founded in 1995 by Lee Soo-man, S.M. functions as not only a record label, but also a talent agency, travel agency, film production company, music production company, event management/concert production firm, and music publishing house.
It’s current roster includes Super Junior, Girls’ Generation, TVXQ, SHINee, f(x), EXO, and solo artist BoA.
YG was founded by Yang Hyun-suk in 1996 and operates as a record label, talent agency, clothing line, cosmetics firm, event management/concert production company, music production company, and music publishing house.
YG boasts artists such as Big Bang, 2NE1, Psy, Masta Wu, Lee Hi, Akdong Musician, iKON, and Winner.
Park Jin-young, a.k.a. JYP, founded JYP Entertainment in 1997 and functions as a record label, talent agency, music production company, event management/concert production company as well as a music publishing house.
JYP is home to artists including Wonder Girls, 2AM, 2PM, miss A, and Got7.
Do you have a favorite from the Big Three? We know our bias, but won’t tell. What’s yours?