Fashion leader, music CEO team up to promote `K-fashion` abroad
A fashion company leader and an entertainment company CEO decided to work together to create a global Korean Wave fashion brand. It is drawing attention if Cheil Industries Vice President Lee Seo-hyeon and YG Entertainment CEO Yang Hyeon-seok might initiate a boom for Korean fashion.
Cheil Industries said it signed a contract for a new business with YG, whose CEO is a former member of the famous Korean rap group Seo Tae-ji and Boys, and will set up a joint venture. They plan to launch a fashion brand to target young people worldwide aged 17 to 23 by combining K-pop and Korean fashion.
The new brand will target the global market first, focusing on global K-pop kids at concept stores outside Korea instead of at Korean department stores and street shops. The plan was initiated by Lee, who has a great interest in globalizing fashion. She exported 8 Seconds, a Korean brand, and launched ALCEE, a brand targeting China. Yang has been known for his talent combining music and fashion since he was a dancer in the rap group. Jeremy Scott, a famous American designer, is a big fan of 2NE1, a Korean girl group who is represented by YG.
A Cheil source said, Following Koreas leading IT products and cars, we will make Korean fashion renowned in the world.
ELand, a major fashion company, set up the joint venture ALEL with SM Entertainment in December 2009. The venture is 51 percent owned by Eland World and 49 percent by SM. ALEL is in charge of joint marketing of SPAO, a SPA brand, and will produce a product laced with SMs contents beyond simply hiring models and will solidify the cooperative relationship for joint marketing.
The SPAO store in (Seoul`s district of) Myeongdong has a karaoke Everything operated by SM and a section that sells the albums and souvenirs of SM Entertainment singers, a Eland source said, adding, We expect huge synergy in growing SPAO into a global SPA brand going forward.
The fashion industry believes the mix of Korean fashion and K-pop will herald the birth of a global fashion brand started in Korea. Fashion is a sector that can be value-added when the producers country is culturally competitive as is seen in the case of expensive products made in France and Italy.
A fashion industry source said, Only a few years ago, there was a `Made in Korea` discount no matter the quality might be. Now, K-pop and Korean dramas have changed it.