HYBE officially acquires Lee Soo Man’s shares and becomes the controlling shareholder of SM Entertainment Soompi

HYBE officially acquires Lee Soo Man’s shares and becomes the controlling shareholder of SM Entertainment Soompi

HYBE today officially acquired Lee Soo Man’s shares in SM Entertainment.

As planned, Lee Soo Man’s shares in SM Entertainment were transferred to HYBE, which has now become the majority shareholder of SM Entertainment.

After the broadcast, HYBE CEO Park Ji Won released the following statement:

“Dear SM Entertainment fans, employees, artists and shareholders, I am Park Ji Won, CEO of HYBE.

I am pleased to announce that on February 22, 2023, HYBE completed the acquisition of 14.8% of SM shares held by founder and former executive producer of SM, Lee Soo Man, and the majority shareholder of has become SM.

As promised on February 10th, HYBE has settled the governance issues between executive producer Lee Soo Man and SL during the share purchase. SM is becoming a transparent governance company that prioritizes shareholder value.

I would like to share more details about the similarities between the internal philosophy of HYBE and SM and the synergies we can create through a future collaboration.

Collaborative innovation based on a common business philosophy

As leaders and pioneers of the K-POP industry, HYBE and SM have triumphed on the world stage. HYBE’s vision to become one of the world’s leading entertainment platform companies as part of the mission “We believe in music” is closely aligned with the goal of SM 3.0 to “leap forward as a fan- and shareholder-centric global entertainment company”. . In addition, the integration of creative skills and content-driven culture of HYBE and SM will showcase pioneering innovations on the world stage.

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Allow full autonomy of creative work based on the multi-label system

HYBE managed to make its multi-label system work by giving each label autonomy. Our key success factor is ensuring complete autonomy over the creator’s work with passion. HYBE respects SM’s heritage and creative values. We will share our business model and networking skills with SM to support his unique and creative work of leading the world.

Leap forward on the world stage as an innovator

Leveraging its expertise and global network, HYBE will actively support SM artists’ efforts to establish themselves in the global music industry. Both companies will work together to shine on the world stage where our artists can showcase their music.

We can share our experiences that ultimately led us to our leading position on the global K-POP stage including the United States, South America and India. HYBE will also benefit from SM’s wealth of experience through the success of its artists in China, Japan and Southeast Asia. Through our combined effort, we can become the most innovative pioneer in the global music industry.

Two leading fandom platforms, HYBE’s Weverse and SM’s Bubble, will expand beyond Korea and compete on the global stage. We will also create new opportunities by leveraging the capabilities of both companies in commercial channels ranging from concerts, distribution and intellectual property of original stories to business development.

The global music industry undoubtedly pays a lot of attention to K-POP and its international success. Still, there are still so many ways to reach a larger fan base with more content and experiences. K-POP thrived in an environment where we could challenge ourselves. We should assert ourselves so that we can stand shoulder to shoulder with the world’s major record labels.

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Last but not least, I am aware of the concerns of SM fans, artists, employees and shareholders due to rumors and speculation surrounding the company. HYBE fully respects the direction set out in the SM 3.0 growth strategy and the value and vision created by SM employees and artists.

I especially want to express my condolences to the SM artists who may be disturbed by this turn of events. We respect SM artists as much as our artists at HYBE. Using our accumulated expertise, we will do our best to create a brighter future for all artists under SM.

It is a time of change for both companies. We hope that short-term business decisions or the biases of certain executives will no longer create confusion and uncertainty. I hope management can come to a wise and sensible conclusion to ensure our shared business vision and directions are on track.

As it says in our DNA “Let’s win together”, HYBE is full of winning spirit in order to be successful together. We hope to have more success with SM fans, staff, artists and shareholders in the near future. Working together, we can continue to lead the global K-POP phenomenon.


Sincerely, Park Ji Won.