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This report provides a detailed analysis of all the main industry sectors in South Korea.


  • South Korea’s recorded-music industry is quite possibly the most advanced in the world.
  • Since the turn of the century, the sector has been through a massive transformation: once almost overrun by piracy, it is now multifaceted with both physical and digital formats and services flourishing.

Features and Benefits

  • Details all the main sectors of the South Korea music industry
  • Assesses recorded-music sales, music retail, record company market shares, live, and royalty collections.

Key questions answered

  • What is the biggest revenue source for South Korean authors and publishers?
  • What share of recorded-music sales were generated by music streaming in 2017?

Table of contents


  • In brief

Recorded music

  • A music market out on its own
  • Strong digital and physical sector
  • Subscriptions dominate digital sales
  • Prospects for 2018 and beyond
  • Repertoire
  • Music companies

Music retail

  • Communications services at the heart of music distribution
  • Digital infrastructure and access

Rights administration and royalty collections

  • Big rise in collections and distributions for KOMCA
  • Performance-rights growth


  • K-pop dominates live performance
  • Seoul the center of the live-music sector
  • Festivals in South Korea


  • Methodology
  • Author