How to start a Model Management Agency in UK USA (Business Plan)

Model Management Agency

Do you have these questions in your mind?

  • What is a Model Management Agency ?
  • How to start a Model Management Agency ?
  • What are the skills required in becoming a Model Management Agency ?
  • How much profit will you make as a Model Management Agency ?


In this article, you will find answers to all your questions. So please grab a cup of coffee, and let’s get started.

Table of Contents

What is a Model Management Agency?

According to a report by IBISWorld, the global modeling agencies industry generated approximately $3.1 billion in revenue in 2021. 


A model management agency is a company that represents and manages professional models. Model management agencies, such as fashion designers, advertising agencies, and photographers, act as intermediaries between models and clients. They help models find work, negotiate contracts, and provide support services such as coaching, training, and career guidance.


In addition to representing models, model management agencies may provide various other services, such as event planning, casting, and production. In addition, some model management agencies specialize in particular types of models, such as fashion models, commercial models, fitness models, or plus-size models.


Model management agencies play a crucial role in the fashion and entertainment industries, helping to connect models with clients and providing valuable support services that help models succeed in their careers.


So, let’s get started! As we guide you through creating your very own Model Management Agency!

The UK model management agency industry generated approximately £160 million in 2021 and is experiencing steady growth due to the rise of influencer marketing and social media. The US industry generated approximately $547 million in 2021 and has experienced moderate growth due to the increasing use of digital media and e-commerce.

Model Management Agency

Define Types of Business Models in Model Management Agency

There are various types of modeling agencies in the US and the UK. Here are some of the most common types:

  • Fashion modeling agencies:
    These are the most well-known type of modeling agencies. They represent models for runway shows, high-end fashion campaigns, and editorial shoots.

  • Commercial modeling agencies:
    These agencies represent models for commercial print ads, TV commercials, and other advertisements.

  • Fitness modeling agencies:
    These agencies represent models with toned and athletic physiques for fitness-related campaigns and photoshoots.

  • Plus-size modeling agencies:
    These agencies represent models who are considered to be plus-size. They often advertise clothing and other products aimed at the plus-size market.

  • Child modeling agencies:
    These agencies represent child models for advertising, fashion, and entertainment purposes.

  • Talent agencies:
    These agencies represent models with additional skills, such as acting or singing, for film and TV roles.

  • Petite modeling agencies:
    These agencies specialize in representing 5’4″ or shorter models for modeling and advertising campaigns aimed at petite women.


It’s important to note that some agencies may represent multiple types of models, while others may focus on one specific area.

Model Management Agency

Pros and Cons of a Model Management Agency

Pros of a Model Management Agency: 

  • High earning potential for successful models and agency owners.

  • Opportunity to work with diverse and creative individuals.

  • Chance to be a part of the fashion and entertainment industry.

  • Ability to provide talent with valuable career opportunities and experiences.


Cons of a Model Management Agency:


  • Highly competitive market with a limited number of top agencies dominating the industry.

  • The industry has a reputation for being superficial and promoting unrealistic beauty standards.

  • Difficulties in managing the schedules and demands of both clients and models.

  • Potential for legal issues such as contract disputes and labor law violations.

Investment required to start a Model Management Agency

Here’s the approximate investment required for setting up a model management agency in the UK and USA:



  • The initial setup cost of a model management agency in the USA can range from $30,000 to $100,000 or more, depending on the location and size of the agency.


  • This includes office space rental, equipment, staff salaries, legal and insurance fees, and marketing expenses.


  • Additional costs may include website design and development, model casting fees, and photo shoot expenses.

Recurring cost / Running monthly expense in Model Management Agency 

It’s important to note that the costs of running a modeling agency can vary greatly depending on the size and location of the agency, as well as other factors such as the number of employees and the types of services offered.


That being said, here are some potential costs for running a modeling agency in the US and the UK:


1. Rent for office space and studio

2. Utilities (electricity, water, internet)

3. Salaries for employees (agents, bookers, accounting)

4. Marketing and advertising

5. Insurance (professional liability, general liability, property insurance)

6. Software and technology expenses (customer relationship management, accounting software, website maintenance)


It's important to keep in mind that these are just rough estimates, and that actual costs can vary depending on a variety of factors.

Model Management Agency

Best modeling agencies list USA & UK 



  • Wilhelmina Models –
  • Ford Models –
  • Elite Model Management –
  • IMG Models –
  • Next Management –
  • Marilyn Agency –
  • One Management –
  • DNA Model Management –
  • Women Management –
  • Fusion Model Management –



  • Storm Model Management –
  • Select Model Management –
  • Elite Model Management –
  • Models 1 –
  • Premier Model Management –
  • Established Models –
  • Next Management –
  • M+P Models –
  • Leni’s Model Management –
  • MOT Models –

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Model Management Agency

Why do people need Model Management Agencies?

People may need a model management agency for several reasons:

  • To help aspiring models build their careers in the fashion and entertainment industries

  • To find and negotiate contracts with clients on behalf of models

  • To manage models’ schedules and ensure they are booked for jobs that align with their career goals and interests

  • To develop models’ portfolios and help them build their brand

  • To provide guidance and support throughout models’ careers, including advice on career choices and professional development

  • To provide a one-stop-shop for clients looking to hire models, including professional representation and support in negotiating contracts and managing bookings.
Model Management Agency

Licenses needed to start a Model Management Agency

Here are the permissions required to create a Model Management Agency in the US and UK:


United States (USA):
The requirements for starting a model management agency vary by state and city. However, you may need to obtain a business license from your local government or state authorities, register your agency with relevant industry associations, such as the Association of Model Agents (AMA), and comply with labor laws and regulations.

You may also need liability insurance to protect your agency and models. You should consult an attorney or business advisor to comply with all legal requirements.

United Kingdom (UK):
There are no specific licenses required to start a model management agency. However, as with any business, you may need to register your agency with the appropriate government authorities, such as Companies House and HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).

Additionally, you may need to obtain liability insurance to protect your agency and models in case of any accidents or incidents.

Note: The specific licenses may vary depending on the location, size, and services the Model Management Agency offers. Researching and complying with all the relevant licensing requirements in the respective country or region is essential.

TIP: You should undertake extensive research on the market niche in which you plan to sell your services and sell those services accordingly.

Model Management Agency

Checklist of Equipment when starting a Model Management Agency

Some essential equipment required for a model management agency in the UK and USA include:

  • Office space and furniture
  • Computers, printers, and other office equipment
  • Modeling software and CRM tools
  • High-quality cameras and lighting equipment for photoshoots
  • Props and backdrops for photoshoots
  • Makeup and hair styling tools
  • Clothing racks, hangers, and other storage equipment for clothing and accessories
  • Marketing and advertising materials such as brochures, business cards, and website development
  • Transportation for models to and from casting calls, fittings, and photoshoots

Note: It’s important to note that the specific equipment requirements for a modeling agency may vary depending on the agency’s size, focus, and business model. Additionally, the equipment needs may evolve as the agency grows and expands its services.

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Model Management Agency

Service List of a Model Management Agency

The main products and services offered by a model management agency may include: 


  • Model representation and management
  • Talent scouting and recruitment
  • Career development and guidance
  • Contract negotiation and management
  • Brand partnerships and endorsements
  • Social media management and influencer marketing
  • Public relations and media outreach
  • Casting services and talent bookings
  • Event management and production
  • Fashion show production and coordination
  • Portfolio development and management
  • Image consulting and styling
  • Health and wellness coaching
  • Legal and financial advice
  • International placement and visa assistance
  • Digital content creation and production
  • Brand building and strategy
  • Networking opportunities and industry events
  • Educational and training programs
  • Diversity and inclusion initiatives.



Different ways modeling agencies make money

1. Commission on model bookings
The most common way modeling agencies make money is by taking a commission on the model’s booking fee. The commission rate varies depending on the agency but typically ranges from 10% to 20% of the total booking fee.


2. Agency fees
Modeling agencies may charge fees for their services, such as model development, portfolio building, or scouting. These fees may be a one-time payment or a recurring fee.


3. Advertising and marketing
Modeling agencies may charge advertising and marketing services fees to promote their models and agency. This may include creating and distributing model comp cards, building and maintaining a website or creating and managing social media accounts.


4. Model rentals
Modeling agencies may rent models for various events, such as photo shoots, commercials, or fashion shows. The agency may charge a fee for the model’s time and services.


5. Endorsements and sponsorships
Modeling agencies may work with brands and companies to secure endorsements and sponsorships for their models. The agency may take a commission on the model’s earnings from these partnerships.


6. Workshops and classes
Modeling agencies may offer workshops and classes for models and industry professionals. These may include modeling, makeup, hair styling classes, or professional development workshops.


7. Product sales:
Some modeling agencies may sell products related to the modeling industry, such as model comp cards, portfolios, or photography equipment.


It’s important to note that a modeling agency’s specific revenue streams and business models may vary depending on its size, focus, and location.

Trends and Challenges in a Model Management Agency:

Trends in a Model Management Agency:

1. Increased diversity and inclusivity in model representation, reflecting changing societal attitudes towards body image and beauty standards.

2. The rise of influencer marketing and social media, which have changed the way models are scouted and marketed.

3. Growing demand for models of all ages, sizes, and backgrounds, reflecting changes in fashion and advertising industries.

4. Increased use of technology in model management, including virtual casting and digital modeling.

Challenges in a Travel Agency:

1. Highly competitive industry, with many agencies vying for top models and clients.

2. Challenges in maintaining ethical and fair labor practices, including issues related to payment, contracts, and working conditions.

3. High turnover rates among models and clients, leading to the need for constant recruitment and networking efforts.

4. Challenges in adapting to changing trends and preferences in the industry, as well as keeping up with advances in technology and social media.

Model Management Agency

Staff needed for a Model Management Agency.

The staff needed for a model management agency can vary depending on the size and scope of the agency’s operations. However, here are some key roles and responsibilities typically found in a model management agency:


  • Agency Director/Owner:
    Oversees the overall management and direction of the agency, including developing business strategy, establishing relationships with clients, and managing staff.

  • Booking Agents:
    Responsible for securing work and bookings for models, negotiating contracts, and managing their schedules.

  • Scouts:
    Responsible for finding new models, evaluating their potential, and signing them to the agency.

  • Model Coordinators:
    Responsible for managing models’ day-to-day schedules, bookings, and travel arrangements.

  • Photographers and Stylists:
    Responsible for producing portfolio photoshoots for models and managing their image and brand.

  • Marketing and PR Professionals:
    Responsible for promoting the agency and its models, including developing marketing materials, managing social media accounts, and coordinating press coverage.

  • Administrative and Finance Staff:
    Responsible for managing the agency’s finances, including accounts payable and receivable, payroll, and other administrative tasks.

The number and type of staff needed for a model management agency will depend on the agency’s size and scope and its specific business model and target market.


Running a modeling agency can be a challenging but rewarding business. To be successful, a modeling agency must have a strong understanding of the industry, be able to effectively market and manage its models, and have a keen eye for scouting new talent.


Additionally, modeling agencies must be able to manage their finances effectively and generate revenue from various sources.

By providing high-quality services to their clients and models, modeling agencies can build a strong reputation in the industry and establish themselves as trusted and respected business. 

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A. There are no specific qualifications required to start a model management agency, but having experience in the fashion industry or business management can be beneficial.

A. Common legal structures for a model management agency include sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company (LLC), or corporation. Consider consulting with a lawyer or accountant to determine the best option for your agency.

A. Scouts and talent agencies can help you find new models, or you can hold open casting calls. Once you find potential models, you will need to evaluate their potential and sign them to the agency through a contract.

A. Networking, building relationships with industry professionals, and marketing efforts such as creating a website, social media presence, and attending fashion events can help you find clients for your models.

A. Fees and commissions can vary based on industry standards and the services provided by your agency. Consider consulting with other agencies or industry professionals to determine appropriate fees and commission rates.

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