6 K-Pop Idols Who Built Their Companies From Scratch

These companies wouldn’t even exist without these artists.

Entertainment companies play a very significant role in the careers of K-Pop idols. Good budgets, networking, and an overall good reputation of a company can give a headstart to its artists’ careers. But there are some groups who didn’t have these means to rely on. Instead of getting a push from their labels, these five K-Pop acts ended up building their companies from scratch:

1. BTS

It is a well-known fact that when BTS were trainees at BigHit Entertainment, the company was pretty much bankrupt. They had very limited staff, budget, and connections. Despite the major setbacks, the seven boys worked their butts off and eventually became one of the biggest artists in the world. With BTS’s success, BigHit Entertainment grew exponentially and evolved into the biggest entertainment conglomerate in the country with the name of Hybe Corporation.

Hybe Corporation building | Hybe Corporation


| @mamamoo_official/Instagram

When MAMAMOO debuted in 2014, they really didn’t have much to rely on except for their outstanding musicality and skills. They were the first artist to debut under RBW Entertainment, which was a pretty much unknown label back then. MAMAMOO’s immense success not only helped them make a name for themselves but also established RBW as a successful label with bigger buildings and multiple subsidiaries. The contribution of this group in making the company a success is so big that to this date, RBW is known as “the company of MAMAMOO.”

RBW Entertainment building | PRESSREEL

3. IU

| @dlwlrma/Instagram

IU debuted in 2008 under LOEN Entertainment, when both her and the company were pretty much unknown to the public. But thanks to her massive success as both a soloist and an actress, LOEN Entertainment rose to the top as well. In 2020, IU left the label and joined the newly established EDAM Entertainment, which was started by her long-time manager. Just like her previous company, EDAM too has benefited from her success.

(left) The old building of LOEN Entertainment and (right) the new building


| viki.com

When GFRIEND debuted in 2015, they were the only artists under Source Music. The company had very limited funds but thanks to the immense talent of the group, it worked out well for both. GFRIEND went on to become one of the most successful third-generation girl groups and earned their company a lot of popularity, as well as revenue. When in 2019 Hybe Corporation acquired Source Music, they were still the biggest artists under the label until their disbandment in 2021.



| Pledis Entertainment

Though Pledis Entertainment had multiple artists under its wing before SEVENTEEN’s debut, it is a pretty much well-accepted fact that they brought prominence and financial stability to the company. SEVENTEEN had to work with tight budgets but thanks to their good music and artistry, they made it to the top. In 2020, Pledis was acquired by Hybe Corporation and it won’t be an exaggeration to say that this growth would have been impossible without SEVENTEEN.

| Pinterest

6. Chung Ha

| @chungha_official/Instagram

Chung Ha was the first artist to debut under MNH Entertainment. After gaining immense popularity through Produce 48 and I.O.I, Chung Ha started her journey as a soloist, only to become a top-tier artist in the industry. The company has definitely reaped benefits from her growth given how they were able to debut a new girl group BVNDIT.