CJ E&M, an entertainment and media content company, said it is in the process of buying a 51 percent stake in Pledis Entertainment, a person familiar with the deal said on June 12.
The two sides have been discussing the buyout and fine-tuning the details, the person told Yonhap News Agency, adding that a memorandum of understanding has been signed between the two on building a comprehensive partnership.
Pledis was founded in 2007 by Han Sung-soo, who worked at SM Entertainment as a producer and is a former manager for K-pop singer BoA. The company is half-owned by Han, while So-net, a Japanese internet service provider run by Sony Network, owns the other half.
CJ E&M plans to buy stakes from both Han and So-net to secure a 51 percent share of the company worth around 50 billion won (US$46.40 million).
As Pledis manages popular K-pop groups like Seventeen, NU‘EST, Pristin and After School, CJ E&M seems to have set its eye on expanding into and finding a new revenue source in the K-pop industry.
Late last year, the company bought a 60 percent stake in Amoeba Culture, a record label that houses Korean hip-hop artists like Dynamic Duo, Primary and Crush.
By Song Seung-hyun and newswires (email@example.com