NetEase Cloud Music just made a serious Kpop content acquisition.
We’ve been watching a jaw-dropping transformation in the Chinese digital music market over the past few years. We’ve even met — incredulously — with ambitious executives who vowed to transform China’s notorious pirate market into something legitimate.
But in just a few years, they’ve made some remarkable progress, especially as streaming has started to take hold. Even vinyl is thing in China!
And the latest deal this week symbolizes that in-progress transformation. China’s leading music platform, NetEase Cloud Music, has just entered into a partnership agreement with South Korea-based Big Hit Entertainment. The result is that the Chinese platform will launch BTS’ repertoire of songs on the platform.
If you are a Kpop fan, you know that BTS is one of the most popular boybands in the world today. Big Hit Entertainment is largely responsible for making this group the sensational success that it is, with militaristic choreography, member selection, and even plastic surgery choices administered from the top.
The boyband, composed of seven members, debuted in 2013. Since then, they have received several major awards and monstrous sales accolades. They’ve even poked into the United States, with a sprinkling of sellout shows in major cities last year.
NetEase Cloud Music, which was founded in 2013, has become one of the most popular music platforms in China with more than 400 million users.
A bulk of the audience is Chinese, but Kpop is immensely popular.
Accordingly, NetEase is signing as many lucrative Kpop deals as possible. In March, the platform successfully licensed the music copyrights of South Korea-based S.M. Entertainment. That’s part of a larger effort to amass a respectable library of Kpop releases.
Outside of Kpop, NetEase has also inked cooperation agreements with a number of music and entertainment firms. That includes Shanghai Henian Information Technology, avex, Kobalt Music, Miman Culture Media, EE-Media, Forward Music, Sony Music Entertainment and B2 Music. NetEase Cloud Music has also partnered with KKBOX, Taiwan’s largest digital music platform, to create the world’s largest Chinese-language music promotion platform.
But back to NetEase’s Big Hit Entertainment agreement…
The agreement with Big Hit Entertainment will effectively unleash a wildly-popular BTS catalog onto an insanely-large audience. Special tracks include ‘MIC Drop (Steve Aoki Remix feat. Designer)’, ‘DNA’, ‘Spring Day’, ‘Not Today’, ‘Blood Sweat & Tears’, ‘Fire’, ‘Dope’ and ‘I Need U’.
Beyond BTS, NetEase Cloud Music will cooperate with Big Hit Entertainment on artist and music promotion.