LOEN Entertainment

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LOEN Entertainment Inc.
J.H. LOEN Entertainment
Native name 주식회사 로엔 엔터테인먼트
Romanized name Jusikhoesa Roen Enteoteinmeonteu
Type Public Jusikhoesa (J.H.)
Traded as KRX: 016170
KRX 100 Component
KOSDAQ 100 Component
Industry Music & Entertainment
Genre K-pop
Rock
Contemporary R&B
Jazz
Classical
Contemporary Christian music
Traditional music[1]
Founded in Seoul, South Korea (as Seoul Records, Inc.)[1]
(October 1978 - incorporation)
(July 7, 1982 - foundation)
Founders Min Yeong-bin
Headquarters 168-23 Samseong-dong, Gangnam District, Seoul, South Korea
Area served worldwide
Key people Shin Won-soo (CEO)
Jo Yeong-cheol (music production head)
Products Music & Entertainment
Services Music, Entertainment, Distributor
Revenue Increase KRW 307 million (2008)
Net income Increase KRW 12 million (2008)
Owners Star Invest Holdings Ltd. (61.43%)
SK Planet Co. Ltd. (15.00%)
other stakeholders (23.57%)[2]
Employees 173 (as of 2012)
Parent YBM Group (1978-2005)
SK Group (2005-present)
Affinity Equity Partners (2013-present)[2]
Divisions See the list here.
Subsidiaries Starship Entertainment[3] (70%)
Website http://www.iloen.com/

LOEN Entertainment (Hangul: 로엔 엔터테인먼트), formerly Seoul Records (Hangul: 서울 음반), is a South Korean record label. It is headquartered in Gangnam-gu, Seoul.

As of 2013, it is the leading record company in South Korea in terms of revenue according to the statistics compiled by the Korea Music Content Industry Association (KMCIA) through the Gaon Music Chart (45.8%); it is the second leading company in terms of album sales (18.4%) according to the same statistics.[4]

About the company[edit]

LOEN Entertainment
Hangul 로엔 엔터테인먼트
Revised Romanization Roen Enteoteinmeonteu
McCune–Reischauer Rŏen Ent'ŏt'einmŏnt'ŭ
Seoul Records
Hangul 서울 음반
Revised Romanization Seoul Eumban
McCune–Reischauer Sŏul Ŭmban

History[edit]

The company was founded as a subsidiary of YBM Sisa, whose main business was creating language learning tapes, in 1978 by Min Yeong-bin.[5] In 1982, the company was officially registered and in 1984 they began distributing and producing classic and traditional music records.

Seoul Records was registered as a venture capital company in 1999 and began to sell albums while also operating an internet shopping site. In 2000, the company changed its name to YBM Seoul Records and began to sell shares on KOSDAQ. The company would then move on to join the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry in 2003. Korean conglomerate SK Telecom bought 60 percent of the company in 2005, making them the company's largest shareholder. YBM Seoul Records also became a part of SK Group as a result.[6] As of 2008, Seoul Records has been known by its current name, LOEN Entertainment.

LOEN was put in charge of operating SK Telecom's online music distribution service, MelOn, in 2009. MelOn is currently the most used online music sales site in South Korea.[7][8]

In 2012, the company signed a deal with crowd-sourced internet television and movie website Viki, to feature music videos, interview clips, concert performances, of their artists such as IU, Brown Eyed Girls and Drunken Tiger.[9]

In August 2012, all the artists signed with LOEN Entertainment were compiled into a special artist group, called LOEN Tree. The group released its first EP, "LOEN Tree Summer Story", on August 2.[10]

On July 18, 2013, Affinity Equity Partners, through its subsidiary Star Invest Holdings Ltd., bought 52.56 percent of LOEN's shares. SK Group now owns only 15 percent after the deal with AEP.[2]

The company was reorganized to include two labels: "LOEN Tree" (Jo Yeong-cheol) and "Collabodadi" (Shinsadong Tiger).[11]

On December 18, 2013, LOEN acquired 70% of shares in Starship Entertainment, making it as an independent subsidiary of LOEN.[3]

Business[edit]

Online music sales account for most of the company's profit, with 93.9% of revenue coming from online music sales. The label also distributes CDs of some other entertainment agencies in South Korea through its branch LOEN Music, but less than 5% revenue is made from them.[12]

Corporate identity[edit]

Company name[edit]

The name LOEN stands for:[1]

  • Live On Entertainment Networks
  • LOve + ENtertainment

Logos[edit]

One of the company's former logos as YBM Seoul Records

The company's first logo was the two small letters s and r (SR, for Seoul Records) combined. At the bottom of the logo was the English name (SEOUL RECORDS), while the Korean name ((주)서울음반) was at its right corner.[13]

Controversies[edit]

2011 price fixing[edit]

LOEN, along with parent SK Telecom, was one of the 15 companies fined and sued by the Korean FTC for price rigging in 2011. The company was slapped with a $9.6 million fine for its role in the scheme.[14]

Incredible promotion conflict[edit]

C-JeS Entertainment and LOEN agreed for a deal in the promotion and distribution of Junsu's second studio album Incredible.

But days before the album's release, C-JeS received a message from LOEN: "We will distribute XIA (Junsu)'s album online and offline, but we have decided to scrap the plans for promotional marketing... This is the decision coming from within (from) the executives, so we ask for your understanding. For the showcase inviting MelOn customers, we will broadcast live through LOEN TV, but we will not be able to show it through MelOn." Promotional banners regarding Junsu's new release on MelOn after his pre-release 11am on the 2nd also disappeared from LOEN's social media accounts.

As a result, C-JeS threatened to leave LOEN's name completely out of the upcoming showcase as well as to file for a civil appeal to the Fair Trade Commission and Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission.[15]

LOEN's response and C-JeS' answer[edit]

LOEN responded, "Right now, we're still in the stages of discussing the terms of Junsu's album promotion contracts. We haven't signed the contract, and there's nothing confirmed. Since there's nothing confirmed, we can't reveal the details. But one thing that is definite is that the article was released before anything was fully decided." They added, "Junsu's label said that we closed all the events, but they're still all going on. During the contract signing stages, opinions can go back and forth all the time during the negotiation process. We could have talked this out, and we're shocked that they said we broke the contract. If it's like C-JeS said, Junsu's showcase event page on MelOn's homepage should have been taken down, but it's still open and functioning normally. We're also going to reveal the chosen fans to attend the showcase on the 11th, as scheduled".

However, C-JeS Entertainment responded, "We sent our statement after receiving the sudden news 6 days before the showcase. We also told them that if they did not answer, we'd be spreading this to the media. But we had no answer. LOEN Entertainment says that we were still in the stages of negotiating and that we hadn't signed the contract, but we started the pre-orders and even started receiving entries for the showcase event. If we didn't have the contract, shouldn't none of this happened?" They added, "Junsu is busy with international CF filming and his Thailand schedule. The reason he planned this showcase is that he wanted to show himself to the public. Since he can't come out freely on broadcast, we prepared a free showcase to show his stage through MelOn TV. Since the label is paying for the showcase, if MelOn TV will not air it, there's no reason to just have this exclusively for MelOn customers. We've currently asked LOEN Entertainment to answer until the afternoon of the 9th (KST). If this doesn't get fixed, the label will invite the fans, and the event will be canceled."[16]

Aftermath[edit]

After C-JeS lashed out and brought media attention, LOEN held a meeting to discuss the matter and the two companies have worked out their differences to reach an understanding.

C-JeS Entertainment stated on July 9, "The dispute with LOEN Entertainment which occurred yesterday (July 8) has now been smoothly resolved. Last night, we met with the LOEN representative and received the official word that they'll carry out all of XIA's promotional activities as previously discussed. XIA's showcase, which many fans have been waiting for all this time, will be live-streamed through MelOn TV. Also, the online promotions for XIA's 2nd full-length album have been confirmed so we will be able to distribute his music and performances for fans of XIA's music.

We sincerely thank the various media outlets for taking interest in the affairs of our agency and the public for showing their support. XIA will return the love and support with the release of his 2nd album on the 15th and an Asia tour and more."[17]

Incredible was released on July 15, 2013, distributed by LOEN.

Divisions[18][edit]

MelOn Biz[edit]

Further information: Melon (online music service)

It refers to MelOn, the online music service (OMS) operated by LOEN. The name MelOn stands for "melody on".[19]

MelOn is the most popular OMS in South Korea with 59 percent (2.3 million) of all OMS users as of November 2013.

Soompi ranked MelOn as the 3rd most influential entity in the K-pop industry.[20]

Contents Biz[edit]

Formerly known as LOEN Music, it became 1theK on February 2014.[21]

It is the content production arm of LOEN, responsible for assisting agencies with album production - whether that be cash investment, CD production, album distribution and anything else required to get an album from the recording booth on to the shelves.

According to LOEN, "it distributes over 300 titles per year and works with capable agencies to discover good albums and invest in the production of music content.”

Artist Biz[edit]

This is LOEN's internal artist management arm, also known as LOEN Artist. It has two sub-divisions, LOEN Tree and Collabodadi.

Starship Entertainment now also belongs to this division.

Awards[edit]

Year Recipient Award Category Result
2011 MelOn Digital Chosun Ilbo Awards Most Trusted Brand (Online Music Service) Won
App Awards Korea Best Entertainment Application Won
2012 Digital Chosun Ilbo Awards Most Trusted Brand (Online Music Service) Won
LOEN Entertainment Korean Digital Business Innovation Awards Grand Prize (Digital Contents) Won
2013 Gaon Chart K-Pop Awards Music Distribution (Online) Won[22]

Artist Management[edit]

LOEN Tree[edit]

Singers

Debuted Artist Gender Members Leader Status Fanbase
(2002) Ra.D1 Male Active
2008 IU Female Active Uaena
2011 Sunny Hill 2 Female Jubee, Seungah, Kota, Misung (former: Janghyun) Active HːLLЁR(Sunshines)
2013 History Male Kyungil, Dokyun, Sihyoung, Jaeho, Yijeong Kyungil Active Storia
2014 Yoon Hyun-sang3 Male Active

1Ra.D debuted in 2002. He later signed to and is currently under Loen Entertainment.
2Sunny Hill (Janghyun, Jubee & Seung Ah) debuted as a co-ed group in 2007 under For Everyone Media. Signed with LOEN Entertainment in 2011. In 2014, leader Janghyun left the group, Sunny Hill is now a 4-member girl group.

Actors

Producers

  • Won Taeyeon
  • G.Gorilla
  • Lee Minsoo
  • Hwang Sooah
  • Ra.D
  • KZ

Lyricists

Collabodadi Label[edit]

Singers

Debuted Artist Gender Members Leader Status Fanbase
2009 Zia1 Female Active
2012 Fiestar Female Jei, Cao Lu, Linzy, Hyemi, Yezi Jei Active Let's

1Zia debuted in 2007 under Taewon Entertainment. Signed with LOEN Entertainment in 2009.

Lyricist / Producer

Trainees[edit]


Former Artists[edit]

Singers[edit]

  • Run (런)
  • Gain (가인)
  • Cheska (former member of Fiestar)

Trainees[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "About the Company". LOEN Entertainment. 2008. Retrieved 2010-08-25. 
  2. ^ a b c Private Equity Korea: SK Planet to divest stake in LOEN Entertainment to Affinity
  3. ^ a b alim17 (December 18, 2013). "Loen Entertainment takes over majority stake in Starship Entertainment for 15 billion won". allkpop. Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  4. ^ Kim, Jin-woo (January 23, 2014). "2013년도 디지털 차트 결산 - 누가 누가 잘했나? (2013 Digital Charts - Do You Know the Who's Who?)". Gaon Music Chart (in Korean) (Korea Music Content Industry Association). Retrieved March 30, 2014. 
  5. ^ "1978 - Founding of "Seoul Records"". YBM Group. 
  6. ^ "Korean Telco Takes Control Of Seoul Records". Billboard (Prometheus Global Media). May 27, 2005. Retrieved August 16, 2013. 
  7. ^ "(주)로엔엔터테인먼트 (LOEN Entertainment,Inc.)". Naver Terms. Naver Corporation. 2012-08-25. Retrieved 2012-11-03. 
  8. ^ ""LOEN versus KT Music": Music cataclysm". Chosun Biz (Chosun Ilbo). 2013-05-13. Retrieved 2013-11-13. 
  9. ^ "Video Subtitling Site Viki Puts K-Pop Content in Spotlight". The Chosun Ilbo. 25 May 2012. Retrieved 30 May 2012. 
  10. ^ LOEN Tree Summer Story on Hanteo
  11. ^ starsung (September 24, 2013). "LOEN Entertainment undergoes reorganization to become a multi-label system". allkpop. Retrieved September 24, 2013. 
  12. ^ "SKT, 국내최대 서울음반 인수 (Seoul Records, SKT's largest acquisition)". Kyunghyang Shinmun. 2005-05-27. Retrieved 2010-08-25. 
  13. ^ "CD의 추억3 - old OSTs (1)". bluo.net. 
  14. ^ "Korea's Fair Trade Commission fines 15 music distributors for collectively rigging prices". allkpop. March 1, 2011. Retrieved July 24, 2013. 
  15. ^ serendipity (July 9, 2013). "C-JeS lashes out at Loen for changing their terms regarding Junsu's upcoming showcase and promotions". allkpop. Retrieved November 21, 2013. 
  16. ^ serendipity (July 9, 2013). "LOEN Entertainment responds to C-JeS' lashing out, C-JeS answers back". allkpop. Retrieved November 21, 2013. 
  17. ^ starsung (July 9, 2013). "C-JeS and LOEN Entertainment resolve their dispute concerning Junsu's showcase and promotions". allkpop. Retrieved November 21, 2013. 
  18. ^ lordbordem (September 25, 2013). "LOEN Entertainment to Split Their Artist Division into Multiple Labels". Soompi. Retrieved November 13, 2013. 
  19. ^ Seung Si-yeon, Park Jong-geun (December 3, 2011). "Shin Won-soo, representing Korea's largest OMS, "MelOn"". JoongAng Ilbo. Retrieved December 13, 2013. 
  20. ^ jun2yng (November 3, 2013). "The Top 10 Most Influential Entities of K-Pop". Soompi. Retrieved November 16, 2013. 
  21. ^ alim17 (February 17, 2014). "LOEN MUSIC changes its name to 1theK". allkpop. Retrieved April 2, 2014. 
  22. ^ jnkm (February 13, 2013). "Winners & Best Moments of the 2nd Gaon Chart K-Pop Awards". Soompi. Retrieved September 28, 2013. 
  23. ^ Suk, Monica (28 February 2012). "Jo Han-sun, Kim Suk Hoon join IU's agency". 10Asia. Retrieved 2012-05-07. 
  24. ^ "Lee Jung Hyuk's Profile". LOEN Website. Retrieved 27 October 2012. 
  25. ^ "Kang Bok-eum's Profile". Nate. Retrieved 29 October 2013. 

External links[edit]