K-pop agency SM Entertainment announces global search for British boy band

They’re looking for the next boy band to “entertain the world.” K-pop powerhouse SM Entertainment and London-based production company Moon&Back Media are launching a talent search to create a British boy band that will also be the subject of a television show.

The TV series will follow the development of the aspiring boy band over six months, starting in London in early 2024. The series executive team includes James McKinlay (X Factor, America’s Got Talent), David Hall (Deal or No Deal, The Chase, The Greatest Dancer) and music industry manager Ben Karter.

The unique partnership between the South Korean and British companies is being celebrated as one of the first of its kind. SM Entertainment has played a crucial role in advancing the careers of numerous global pop groups, including NCT, aespa, SuperM, Red Velvet, RIIZE and more.

“This collaboration represents our first footprint in Europe. “Our expansion plan will continue to span North and South America, Europe and other key markets, leveraging SM Entertainment’s large artist roster and extensive networks for unprecedented synergies,” said Joseph Chang (Jang Yoon-jung), CEO of Kakao Entertainment America to Music Business Worldwide.

The collaboration comes as the South Korean entertainment agency continues to expand into global markets and build on the success of its artists. In August 2023, the company opened an integrated North American division with Kakao Entertainment to promote SM girl groups IVEIVE, Aespa and boy band NCT.

Meanwhile, the English production company Moon&Back Media was founded by BAFTA-winning producer Nigel Hall (The X Factor, Got Talent and One Direction), British media manager Dawn Airey (C4, C5, ITV, Sky, Getty Images) and talent manager Russ Lindsay (Ant & Dec, Simon Cowell). The company recently secured investment from Endeavor-backed Asylum Entertainment Group in September 2023.

“Take one of the world’s best entertainment producers and combine it with the world’s best K-pop producer and watch the magic unfold. This is a global first that creates a British boy band and exposes them to the wonders and rigors of the premium K-pop process with SM Entertainment,” added Dawn Airey, co-founder of Moon&Back. “This alchemy will produce compelling television and a boy band that will entertain the world.”

The untitled series is currently in pre-production and will be filmed in both the UK and South Korea.

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