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Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation

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Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation
Native name
Korean name
주식회사 문화방송
株式會社 文化放送
Revised RomanizationJusikhoesa Munhwa Bangsong
McCune–ReischauerChushikhoesa Munhwa Pangsong
Company typePublic broadcasting company
KRX: 052220
IndustryBroadcast radio and television
Founded21 February 1961; 63 years ago (1961-02-21)
Headquarters267, Sangam-dong, Mapo District, ,
Area served
  • South Korea
  • United States (satellite, certain metropolitan areas over-the-air)
Key people
Ahn Hyung-joon, CEO and president (2023-present)[1]
Revenue1,500,941,912,398 won (2015)
59,272,035,738 won (2015)
82,403,520,805 won (2015)
Total assets2,557,227,645,206 won (December 2015)
Total equity1,000,000,000 won (December 2015)
Owner Ministry of Culture Sports and Tourism
Number of employees
1,712 (December 2015)

Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation (MBC; Korean주식회사 문화방송; Hanja株式會社 文化放送; RRJusikhoesa Munhwa Bangsong; lit. "Joint-stock company Cultural Broadcasting") is one of the leading South Korean television and radio broadcasters. Munhwa is the Sino-Korean word for "culture". Its flagship terrestrial television station MBC TV broadcasts as channel 11.

Established on 2 December 1961, MBC's terrestrial operations have a nationwide network of 17 regional stations. Although it operates on advertising, MBC is a Network Radio Television as its largest shareholder is a public organization, the Foundation of Broadcast Culture. MBC consists of a multimedia group with one terrestrial TV channel, three radio channels, five cable channels, five satellite channels and four DMB channels.

MBC is headquartered in Digital Media City (DMC), Mapo District, Seoul and has the largest broadcast production facilities in Korea including digital production centre Dream Center in Ilsan, indoor and outdoor sets in Yongin Daejanggeum Park.


Radio era (1961-1968)[edit]

Launching the first radio broadcast signal (call sign: HLKV, frequency: 900 kHz, output: 10 kW) from Seoul, MBC started as the first non-governmental commercial broadcaster in Korea. On 12 April 1963, it obtained a license from the government for operating regional stations in major cities (Daegu, Gwangju, Daejeon, Jeonju) in Korea, and established a broadcast network which connects six cities including Seoul and Busan.

Black and white TV era (1969-1980)[edit]

MBC launched TV broadcasting on 8 August 1969 (call sign: HLAC-TV, output: 2 kW), and started to broadcast its main news program MBC Newsdesk on 5 October 1970. It reached affiliation deal with 7 commercial stations (in Ulsan, Jinju, Gangnueng, Chuncheon, Mokpo, Jeju, Masan) between 1968 and 1969, and started nationwide TV broadcasting through its 13 affiliated or regional stations. In 1974, FM radio was launched, and MBC took over the Kyunghyang Shinmun (daily newspaper company).

Colour TV era (1980-1990)[edit]

The first colour TV broadcasting was started on 22 December 1980. MBC was separated from the Kyunghyang Shinmun according to the 1981 Basic Press Act. In 1982, it moved into the Yeouido headquarters. That same year, the network founded its baseball team, MBC Cheong-ryong (Blue Dragon), which entered the KBO League as a charter team, in addition to the network being the first home of the league's TV broadcasts. With the live coverage of the 1986 Seoul Asian Games and the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games, MBC made a great advancement in scale and technology.

Ownership of the Blue Dragon was passed to LG Corporation in 1989.

Multimedia era (1991-2000)[edit]

After rapidly growing into a large corporation, covering major international events, MBC established specialized companies for each value chain (MBC Production, MBC Media Tech, MBC Broadcast Culture Center, MBC Arts Company, MBC Arts Center) and spined them off as subsidiaries to become a more efficient corporation amid fiercer competition in the multimedia era. ※ MBC Production and MBC Media Tech were merged into MBC C&I in August, 2011.

Digital era (2001–present)[edit]

As the convergence of broadcasting and communications becomes full-fledged, MBC made its subsidiary iMBC (internet MBC) an independent corporation and pursued various internet-related business. Furthermore, it started cable TV (MBC Plus Media,) satellite TV, new DMB broadcasting and full daytime broadcasting on terrestrial television. In 2007, MBC established digital production centre Ilsan Dream Center, which is equipped with high-tech production facilities. In September 2014, it completed the construction of a new headquarters building and moved from Yeouido to Sangam-dong, opening a new era of Sangam MBC.

In 2001, MBC launched satellite and cable television broadcasting. As part of this expansion it created MBC America, a subsidiary based in Los Angeles, United States, to distribute its programming throughout the Americas. On 1 August 2008, MBC America launched MBC-D, a television network carried on the digital subchannels of KSCI-TV, KTSF-TV, and WMBC-TV. The service was planned to be launched in Atlanta, Chicago, and Washington, D.C. by the end of the year.[2] In northeast metro Atlanta, it aired on WKTB-CD channel 47.3 (now a Telemundo affiliate), but as of 2011 is on WSKC-CD channel 22.1.

In March 2013, computer shutdowns hit South Korean television stations, including MBC.[3] The South Korean government asserted a North Korean link in the March cyberattacks, which has been denied by Pyongyang.[4]

International relations[edit]

MBC is an active member of international organizations such as ABU (Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union), IATAS (International Academy of Television Arts & Science) and INPUT (International Public Television Screening Conference), and is affiliated with 21 broadcasters in 13 countries.

It is engaged in various global business through overseas corporations in Los Angeles and Shanghai, and bureaus in North America, Latin America, Europe and the Middle East as well as Asia, in close cooperation with major global media groups.

MBC is devoted to entering foreign markets and expanding the business area. It maintains a close relationship with foreign buyers by participating in major content markets every year such as MIP-TV, MIPCOM, NATPE, BCWW and ATF. It operates an English website which introduces various MBC content to the overseas buyers and viewers so that they can easily access its content.

MBC drama What on Earth Is Love? is the first Korean Wave drama which sparked the K-drama boom across China, when it was aired on CCTV in 1997. Since then, numerous MBC dramas, entertainment shows, and documentaries have been exported to different countries. The drama Dae Jang Geum was shown in as many as 91 countries around the world. More recently, MBC is widening its content business area by exporting show formats such as I Am a Singer, We Got Married and Dad! Where Are We Going? to other countries.


  • One terrestrial TV (MBC TV — channel 11)
  • Three radio stations:
Name Frequency Power (kW)
MBC Standard FM 95.9 MHz FM />10 kW (FM)
MBC FM4U 91.9 MHz FM 10 kW
Channel M CH 12A DAB 2 kW
  • Five cable/satellite (MBC Drama, MBC Sports+, MBC M, MBC every1 and MBC ON)
  • Three terrestrial DMB (TV, radio, data)
  • Two satellite DMB (MBC Drama, MBC Sports+)


Logo history[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Broadcaster MBC confirms new CEO appointment". 23 February 2023. Archived from the original on 1 March 2023. Retrieved 1 March 2023.
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 2 August 2008.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ Choe, Sang-Hun (20 March 2013). "Computer Networks in South Korea Are Paralyzed in Cyberattacks". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 2 June 2019.
  4. ^ Lee Minji (10 April 2013). "(2nd LD) Gov't confirms Pyongyang link in March cyber attacks". Yonhap News. Archived from the original on 15 April 2013. Retrieved 2 June 2019.

External links[edit]