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SM Entertainment’s Lee Soo Man Among Variety500: ‘The Father of K-pop Remains Highly Influential’

SM Entertainment’s Lee Soo Man Among Variety500: ‘The Father of K-pop Remains Highly Influential’

Variety released their fourth annual edition of Variety500, which finds SM Entertainment’s chairman and producer Lee Soo Man as one of the 500 most influential business leaders shaping the global media industry.

Dubbed by the publication as the “father of K-pop,” Lee Soo Man becomes the only Korean leader to be selected for the Variety500 index for four consecutive years. Members are selected by Variety’s editorial group reflective upon the achievements of each prominent leader over the past 12 months. The list also finds honorees Steven Spielberg, Apple CEO Tim Cook, Capitol Music Group Chairman Steve Barnett, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige, Amazon Chairman Jeff Bezos, Warner Music Group CEO Stephen Cooper, and Netflix CEO Reed Hastings. A notable mention and newest addition to the index is that of Big Hit Entertainment‘s chairman and CEO Bang Si Hyuk for leading the first Korean act on the Billboard 100 and for his push on diversification and strategic acquisitions.

Since the launch of the breakout boy band H.O.T. in 1996, the pioneer of K-pop “remains highly influential,” particularly as he continues to shape the entertainment industry around the world through forward-thinking and continual innovation within culture and technology.

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The chairman and producer recently served as a representative of the Korean cultural community and delivered a keynote at the first World Cultural Industry Forum (WCIF) that focused on the theme regarding the future of the world entertainment industry, K-pop, and Culture Universe since COVID-19. He was honored with the World Cultural Industry Forum Award for his cooperation to find ways to change the world entertainment industry and promote international collaboration within the industry. It was also announced in November that the Los Angeles City Council moved to name an intersection in downtown LA to be named “SM Entertainment Square” to express respect for the innovative contributions that Lee Soo Man has made to the music industry while leading K-pop onto the world stage.

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