|Public Jusikhoesa (J.H.)|
|Headquarters||Seoul, South Korea|
|Park Seong-hoon (CEO)[a]|
|Revenue||US 323.2 million (2014)|
| KRW 65.9 billion (2015)
KRW 58.4 billion (2014)
| KRW 50.6 billion (2015)
KRW 45.7 billion (2014)
|Total assets||KRW 303.8 billion (2014)|
|Owner||Kakao Corp. (67.76%)
NH Investment & Securities (6.03%)
Number of employees
|361 (as of October 2016)|
|Parent||YBM Group (1978–2005)
SK Group (2005–2016)
Affinity Equity Partners (2013–2016)
Kakao Corp. (2016–present)
|Revised Romanization||Roen Enteoteinmeonteu|
LOEN Entertainment (Hangul: 로엔 엔터테인먼트; formerly Seoul Records (Hangul: 서울 음반), is a South Korean entertainment company established by Min Yeong-bin in 1978. It is currently one of the largest co-publisher companies in South Korea. The company operates as a record label, talent agency, music production company, event management, concert production company and music publishing house.
As of 2015, LOEN is the leading record company in South Korea by net revenue according to the statistics compiled by the Korea Music Content Industry Association (KMCIA) through the Gaon Music Chart (30.4%); it is also the second leading company in terms of album sales (25.4%). Since January 2016 LOEN has been a subsidiary of Kakao.
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 makes less than 5% of its revenue through them.
- 1 History
- 2 Corporate identity
- 3 Controversies
- 4 Divisions
- 5 Artists
- 6 Awards
- 7 See also
- 8 Notes
- 9 References
- 10 External links
LOEN Entertainment was founded as Seoul Records in 1978 by Min Yeong-bin as a subsidiary of YBM Sisa, a company mainly involved in creating language-learning tapes. The company was officially registered in 1982, and in 1984 it began to produce and distribute records of classical and traditional music. It was registered as a venture capital company in 1999 when it began to sell albums while operating an online shop. In 2000, the company's name was changed to YBM Seoul Records and it began to operate on KOSDAQ. The company joined the IFPI in 2003. Korean conglomerate SK Telecom bought a 60% share of the company in 2005, and YBM Seoul Records subsequently became part of SK Group. As of 2008, the company has been known as LOEN Entertainment.
In August 2012, the recording artists under LOEN collaborated to release a collaborative EP titled LOEN Tree Summer Story under the collective title 'LOEN Tree'.
On July 18, 2013, Affinity Equity Partners, through its subsidiary Star Invest Holdings Ltd., bought 52.56% of LOEN's shares, leaving SK Group with only 15%. Five months later, Star Invest Holdings acquired RealNetworks, Inc.'s 8.83% stake in the company. The company was reorganized to include two labels: "LOEN Tree" (Jo Yeong-cheol) and "Collabodadi" (Shinsadong Tiger).
On May 11, 2017, LOEN announced its strategic drama production alliance with CJ E&M's drama production subsidiary Studio Dragon Corporation. Among the plans under the alliance is producing dramas based on web novels and webtoons on KakaoPage and Daum Webtoons (which copyrights are managed by Podotree, the web literature subsidiary of Kakao). (LOEN first entered the drama production industry three years ago through the cable-web drama Another Parting, which starred Seo In-guk and Wang Ji-won.) On August 25, LOEN announced that its joint venture with Studio Dragon will be called as "Mega Monster".
LOEN Entertainment is currently in the process of making a new girl group ready to debut next year with fellow Produce 101 and Kpop Star contestants, Park Soyeon and Lee Soomin. The company has also signed actress Kim So-hyun through setting up her own independent label, E&T Story Entertainment, which is led by her long-time manager Park Chan-woo.
Upon approval by the company's board of directors in a December 20 meeting, LOEN Entertainment will be known as Kakao M Corporation (Hangul: 주식회사 카카오엠) starting March 2018. The letter M in the new corporate name stands for three things: Melon (the company's flagship online music service), Music (the company's core business) and Media (another business that the company will advance to in the future). The company will now also have a corporate catchphrase, "We Entertain”.
The name LOEN stands for:
- Live On Entertainment Networks
- LOve + ENtertainment
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.
As of 2015, LOEN currently uses two types of catalog number codes for its releases: the L10000**** series (now at the -5000 suffix) and the L20000**** series (now at the -1000 suffix).
LOEN, along with then-parent SK Telecom, was one of the 15 companies fined and sued by the Korean FTC for price rigging in 2011. The company was fined $9.6 million for its role in the scheme.
On October 9, 2016, the Supreme Court of South Korea handed out a 100 million won fine each to LOEN and its closest competitor Genie Music (then known as KT Music) for colluding in price fixing, dating back to a case filed in 2008. Co-CEO Shin Won-soo, who was the sole CEO at the time being, was also sentenced to pay 10 million won.
Incredible promotion conflict
In 2013, LOEN made a deal with C-JeS Entertainment to promote and distribute Junsu's second studio album Incredible. Days before the album's release, C-Jes was reportedly notified by LOEN that they would distribute the album but had scrapped plans for promotional marketing and broadcasting Junsu's upcoming showcase on MelOn, although they would be able to broadcast it on LOEN TV. Promotional banners regarding the album's release on MelOn also disappeared from LOEN's social media accounts. C-JeS subsequently threatened to remove mentions of LOEN from Junsu's upcoming showcase and to file for a civil appeal to the Fair Trade Commission and Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission.
In response, LOEN stated that they were still in discussions regarding the album's promotion and that nothing had been confirmed prior to the relevant article's release. They pointed to the showcase event page on MelOn's homepage still being up as evidence that promotions were going ahead as planned. C-JeS responded saying that they had begun receiving pre-orders for the album and entries for the showcase event without a response from LOEN.
Following media attention, the two companies met on July 8 and resolved the dispute. Incredible was promoted and distributed by LOEN as planned.
MelOn Biz is LOEN's online music service division, operating MelOn, short for 'melody on'. MelOn is the most popular music service in Korea, with 59% of all users in South Korea as of November 2013. That year Soompi ranked MelOn as the third most influential entity in the K-pop industry.
Contents Biz is responsible for LOEN's content production division 1theK, which was known as LOEN Music before February 2014. The name '1theK' indicates its aim of creating one source for worldwide K-pop content. According to LOEN it distributes over 300 titles per year, working with independent agencies to invest in music production.
Production Biz is LOEN's artist management division, formerly known as Artists Biz. LOEN Entertainment manages their artists separated into house label LOEN Tree and Collabodadi, established in September 2013. Collabodadi artists were moved to LOEN Tree in September 2015 and later LOEN Tree renamed as Fave Entertainment in February 2017.
|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|
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- "Loen Entertainment on the Forbes Asia 200 Best Under A Billion List". Forbes Asia. Forbes Inc. July 2014. Retrieved May 14, 2015.
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