Static Waves, a Netherlands-based channels and content distribution company, has teamed with Korea’s Arirang TV to launch K-Wave, which they claim will be the world’s first free ad-supported television (FAST) channel dedicated to Korean popular music (K-pop).
K-Wave will launch in January in the U.S. Europe and Asia via Zeasn, a platform which distributes to TCL, HiSense TV+ and Vestel brands of connected TVs pre-installed with Zeasn’s Whale OS.
Its content will include: original series, live concerts, documentaries on K-pop stars, music and fashion trends, dance instruction videos and behind-the-scenes clips.
To propel its Korean expansion, Static Waves has established a local business entity, Static Waves Korea, based in Seoul. It will be led by veteran TV producer, director, and manager Andrew Lee Jaehuyk, designated as MD.
Lee and the new unit will be involved in production of original content for the new channel. Their first show is documentary series “Choom Planet,” co-produced with CJ ENM’s Mnet and RAPA (Korea Radio Promotion Association). It tracks leading Korean K-Pop choreographer Baek Koo-young as he prepares for a special performance with a group of K-Pop fans in Europe who cover K-Pop dances, giving an in-depth look at the appeal of K-Pop as a global pop culture phenomenon. The series will be broadcast on CJ ENM’s music channel Mnet and M2 YouTube channel, and will premiere on K-Wave in February 2024.
“This is an incredibly exciting time to be launching the world’s first FAST channel dedicated to K-pop,” said Lee. “K-pop has never been bigger. It’s the number one music genre on Spotify and Korean content in general is resonating with audiences around the world. Making K-Wave available on FAST platforms will only serve to make this cultural phenomenon more accessible to audiences on a global scale.”