On February 7, YG Entertainment made the exciting announcement that BIGBANG would be making their highly awaited comeback this upcoming spring. Ever since the news went public, the agency has been seeing a huge increase in their company’s market value which begs the question—can BIGBANG’s return put YG Entertainment back into the ‘Big 3’ spotlight?
The ‘Big 3’ is a commonly known term within the Korean entertainment industry, as it indicates the top three entertainment agencies within the nation. In previous years, it was always a battle between SM Entertainment, JYP Entertainment, and YG Entertainment. However, given BIGBANG’s ongoing popularity and influence of the time, YG Entertainment always managed to come out on top amongst their other two contenders.
And while the boy group’s influence remains strong as ever, with their slowing promotions and other controversial circumstances, YG Entertainment found themselves struggling with their company’s market value. Following BIGBANG’s hiatus in 2018, YG Entertainment didn’t place in the top three rankings, as they were pushed out into fourth place by HYBE Labels (formerly Big Hit Entertainment), who skyrocketed in value following the global success of BTS.
According to Media Us, HYBE Labels has a market capitalization worth of ₩10.7 trillion KRW (about $8.92 billion USD), SM Entertainment ₩1.63 trillion KRW (about $1.36 billion USD), and JYP Entertainment ₩1.58 trillion KRW (about $1.32 billion USD). For the first time in a long time, YG Entertainment found themselves nowhere near the trillion won market cap or in the ‘Big 3.’
So why did this happen? While other factors may have applied, the reports indicate that YG Entertainment’s market value coincided with BIGBANG’s activities. During the boy group’s prime and active promotions, the agency was able to take the first place spot within the K-Pop industry with ease. Their global reach, international fanbase, and incredible influence were unmatched at the time of their promotions.
However, over the past few years during BIGBANG’s sudden hiatus, YG Entertainment’s market cap began to decline rapidly. Despite having other enormously popular artists, such as TREASURE, iKON, WINNER, and BLACKPINK—who has been holding down the fort since BIGBANG’s hiatus—the reported numbers proved that YG Entertainment’s younger groups were just no match for the global boy group during their prime.
With the recent news of BIGBANG’s comeback, however, everything has already started to shift. Things began to look up for YG Entertainment as their market cap reached the ₩1.00 trillion KRW (about $834 million USD) mark again—just days after the comeback announcement. What does this mean? This sudden influx in their value means that the public and the market are both reacting positively to the group’s comeback news.
And while this is all just the beginning of what could be on its way and nothing is certain, YG Entertainment’s recent market cap increase only proves that BIGBANG—despite all of the ups and downs they faced—still has an influence within the Korean music industry.