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Record Labels

UMG to Distribute HYBE Globally, Taps Scooter Braun to Head Promotional Activities in North America

The deal to give UMG digital distribution rights to HYBE labels will last for 10 years.

From left: Bang Si-Hyuk (Chairman of HYBE), Sir Lucian Grainge (Chairman and CEO of Universal Music Group), Scooter Braun (CEO of HYBE America)

From left: Bang Si-Hyuk (Chairman of HYBE), Sir Lucian Grainge (Chairman and CEO of Universal Music Group), Scooter Braun (CEO of HYBE America)

Jordan Strauss

Universal Music Group (UMG) has expanded its relationship with HYBE to include the exclusive digital and physical distribution rights to the company’s artists for the next 10 years. UMG will also continue to collaborate with HYBE’s Weverse to onboard more UMG signees to the superfan platform.

Scooter Braun, CEO of HYBE America, will take on new responsibilities with the new agreement. The SB Projects founder and former manager to Ariana Grande, Demi Lovato and J Balvin will now oversee all promotional and marketing collaborations between HYBE and UMG in North America.


Notably, this exclusive distribution deal does not include social media sites YouTube, Meta and TikTok, allowing HYBE artists to remain on the short-form video app despite UMG’s current licensing feud with TikTok.

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The announcement builds upon the already established relationship between HYBE and UMG which started in 2017 with a partnership that gave UMG distribution rights to HYBE’s BTS in Japan. In late 2021, HYBE expanded the deal to grant UMG’s Geffen Records distribution rights for BTS in the United States and other regions, moving their U.S. distribution over from Sony Music’s Columbia Records.

Geffen and HYBE also worked together via a joint venture to put together the Netflix and YouTube streaming documentary series The Debut: Dream Academy in which the two music companies work together to form an American girl group using HYBE’s K-pop methodology.

Last year, BMG also moved some of its distribution to Universal Music. In October, the company announced that it would move its physical distribution to UMG’s Commercial Services divison, starting in the second quarter of 2024. It will be fully transitioned by the end of 2024.

“A partnership of this magnitude only comes together when both sides are equally committed to continued growth,” says Bang Si-Hyuk, Chairman of HYBE. “UMG is an iconic music company and together with HYBE, the potential is endless. We are certain that this will expand our global footprint, while benefiting our fans, artists, and labels.”

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“Chairman Bang, Scooter Braun and Jiwon Park have brought an innovative and progressive vision to the industry that underscores music’s global power,” adds Lucian Grainge, Chairman and CEO of Universal Music Group. “With the opportunities in engaging the superfan via their groundbreaking Weverse model, we’re thrilled to grow and expand our platform business collaboration as we evolve together leading the music industry’s evolution.”

“This incredible partnership between our companies will ensure mutual benefits and collaborations for the fans, teams, artists, and labels around the world,” says Braun, CEO of HYBE America. “The opportunity created here not only allows us to help our current roster, but grow opportunities for independent artists and labels globally. I’ve known and respected Sir Lucian Grainge for many years, and alongside chairman Bang and HYBE CEO Jiwon Park, we look forward to the undeniable opportunities that will come from this partnership as we together grow the music industry’s future.”

This article was originally published by Billboard U.S.

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BTS' RM appears in the music video for his song "Groin."
Courtesy Photo.

BTS' RM appears in the music video for his song "Groin."

Music News

BTS’ RM Takes to the Streets for ‘Groin’ Music Video: Watch

The track appears on the K-pop star's new "Right Place, Wrong Person" album.

RM has dropped the music video for his song “Groin,” which appears on the BTS star’s new album, Right Place, Wrong Person.

On Monday (May 27), the RM shared the Pennacky-directed clip for “Groin,” which finds the singer and rapper decked out in a dark Adidas track jacket while dancing and rapping in the streets.

This article was originally published by Billboard U.S.

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