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Instiz Reveals K-Pop Album Sales Data For 2012, SM-YG Dominates!

By Staff Reporter | March 08, 2013 04:19 AM EST

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The Instiz chart is a chart that combines results from all variety of charts used in Korea, and is used to compute whether someone gets an All-Kill.  Recently, Instiz released the numbers in terms of album sales for the year 2012.  To show a fair computation for fans and stakeholders alike, Instiz showed the data many different ways.  Now, let's break it down.

Album Sales According to Agency:


Here, we determined where the agencies rank in terms of album sales.  The chart shows how  SM and YG dominate the chart at 28% and 15% of the sales respectively.  This leaves only a very fragmented playing field among other agencies.  Third place is almost a tie this year between Woorim Entertainment (INFINITE's agency) which has a slight lead at 6% over the next two who are tied in fourth place, CUBE Entertainment and FNC Entertainment who each get 5% of the pie. The entrance of Woorim into the Top 5 certainly is proof of INFINITE's ascent in the 2011 and 2012. Notably missing in the Top 5 is JYP Entertainment which got 3% of album sales in 2012. With 2PM and 2AM resuming activities recently, it will be interesting to see where JYP Entertainment will sit in the ranking.

Top 5:

SM (28%)

YG (15%)

Woorim Entertainment (6%)

Cube Entertainment (5%)

FNC Entertainment (5%)

Album Sales According to Artists

Some fans perhaps only care about where their favorite artists fall relative to other artists.  That data is even more fragmented from the Instiz information.  At the top, with 10% of album sales is ta-da! Super Junior!  While this is not entirely surprising given the passion of E.L.F and the strength and creativity of Super Junior as musicians, sometimes it is good to know that the group continue their hold in terms of album sales.  In close second is BIG BANG, while Various Artists and TVXQ are tied in third place. So, who are these 'Various Artists' contending with Yunho and Changmin, you ask?  Given the heavy influence that dramas still have on the industry as a whole, 'Various Artists' likely comes from drama soundtracks (i.e. OSTs).  This data proves how SM got to their 28%, as the two of the Top 5 artists in terms of album sales are from their stable. 

Top 5:

Super Junior (10%)

BIG BANG (8%)

TVXQ (7%)

Various Artists (likely OSTs) (7%)

Album Sales Within Each Agency - SM Entertainment

Now we know that SM made up first place in overall agency, but I'm sure SMTOWN fans would like to know how their favorite SM artists stack up.  We know that Super Junior made up the top of the pack in terms of overall artist album sales.  This automatically translates as well to their ranking within SM Entertainment itself.  Super Junior makes up slightly over a third of SM's album sales at 34%, followed by TVXQ at nearly a quarter of SM album sales.  SHINEe comes in third with 13%. EXO and Girls Generation are tied at fourth place, thus rounding up the Top 5.  This is becoming even more interesting as it will be nice to learn how much of these sales numbers are contributed by international fans purchasing albums.

Album Sales Within Each Agency -  YG Entertainment

BIG BANG was the only YG artists who made it to the Top 5 of the per artist list, hence BIG BANG also should lead the pack under YG Entertainment.  Indeed, they take up half of the album sales within YG. G-Dragon takes up the other quarter while Psy, even with his breakthrough year only falls into third with 12%.  2NE1 only takes up 4% of total album sales for YG, but this is due largely to the fact that these ladies did not really release a full album or an EP, except for the release of "I Love You'".  The YG data shows that G-Dragon is reeling in the income for YG -- being the main producer of BIG BANG, and also a successful solo artist under the family.

A key takeaway from this Instiz yearly data is that K-pop is still a relatively fragmented market, what with the many groups debuting each day plus all the other artists who are still working hard, maybe even working harder to maintain their spot in the industry.  This fragmentation spells both an opportunity for those who are trying to get in, while also a challenge to others who are already in the industry.  It is a matter of right timing to debut properly and secure a slice of the chart, while it also is a matter of great responsibility to maintain one's place, no missteps are allowed.

Tagged :  instiz chart, SM Entertainment, YG Entertainment

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