Seoul-based YG Entertainment is a giant of K-Pop, and has worked with superstars including BLACKPINK, BIGBANG, 2NE1, and Psy.
The company was founded by Yang Hyun-suk in 1996. Hyun-suk left the company in June 2019, but remains a shareholder.
Tencent share purchase in YG Entertainment
In 2016, Tencent and its subsidiary ticketing company, Weiying, jointly acquired an $85 million stake in YG Entertainment.
That deal have Tencent 4.5% of YG, with Weiying owning 8.2%.
This made Tencent and Weiying the fourth and third largest stakeholders in YG, respectively, behind L Capital Asia, the venture investment arm of luxury goods firm LVMH.
At the time, Tencent said in a statement: “[This] move deepens our already successful relationship with YG, as evidenced by [a previously existing] exclusive content partnership between QQ Music and YG.
“Leveraging our extensive user reach, multi-platform capabilities and deep understanding of the China market, we look forward to working with YG to meet the huge appetite in China for popular Korean entertainment such as music, concerts and variety shows, and to exploring new business opportunities.”
In 2017, Weiying merged its operations (and its YG stake) into a rival company, Maoyan Entertainment, which was consequently co-owned by Tencent.
In October 2020, Maoyan divested its stake in YG Entertainment. According to the Korea Herald, this left Maoyan with a 5.78% stake in YG, reduced from 8.09%.
YG Plus and Big Hit Entertainment investment
In January 2020, YG rival Big Hit Entertainment announced it intended to invest $63 million into a subsidiary of YG Entertainment, YG Plus.
YG Plus is a music distribution and merchandise production company. In addition, it is an advertising agency that has worked with clients such as Coca-Cola and SK Telecom.Music Business Worldwide