BTS Label Success Entertainment Nearly Doubles Profits From Previous Year, Adds $15 Million In Running Profit

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Big Hit Entertainment—the increasingly global record label and agency home to artists like BTS and Tomorrow X Together—shared updates of major revenue growth for the past year while also laying out the groundwork for their future plans. Taking place in Seoul on February 4, the company held their “Big Hit Corporate Briefing With the Community” featuring speakers like Big Hit co-CEOs Bang Si-Hyuk and Lenzo Yoon, the latter of whom recently took the red carpet with BTS at the 2020 Grammy Awards last month.

Bang shared how the past year saw Big Hit preparing to establish itself as a multi-label, multi-business company which included major moves like acquiring the Source Music label (home to chart-topping girl group GFriend) and establishing a new joint label with Korean-entertainment powerhouse CJ ENM called Belift. Citing music sales, video content, business diversification and more, Big Hit reported their revenue grew to $494.6 million (or 587.9 billion Korean won) with an operating profit of $82 million (97.5 billion KRW).

This nearly doubles the $254 million (301.4 billion KRW) in revenue from 2018 along with a solid increase from last year’s operation profit of $67.2 million (79.8 billion KRW).

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Part of this growth has been thanks to Big Hit Entertainment’s expansion into new business as part of their “Big Hit Labels” family that includes the aforementioned Source Music and Belift. New business ventures for these artists, as well as new groups, are all on the horizon the company revealed.

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Yoon Hyuk Choi, Vice President of Belift, talked about his vision of bringing “K-pop into the mainstream” while looking to implant the K-pop training and preparation process in the global market. A new boy band made up of multinational members has plans to debut within the year through Belift.

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Meanwhile So Sung Jin, president of Source Music, shared that a new girl group has been formed with plans to debut in 2021 after a successful “Plus Global Audition” program alongside Big Hit. With GFriend as their first artist, Source revealed their hopes to become the “No. 1 girl-group label” with their new partner in Big Hit.

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Lastly, Young Jae Shin, Vice President of Big Hit Labels, unveiled plans for Big Hit’s artists which include launching a new boy band in 2022 and, more immediately, the first world tour for Big Hit’s youngest boy band Tomorrow X Together.

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Big Hit also pointed to other areas of growth including growing the number of artists to their newly developed social-media fanclub app WeVerse (popular boy band Seventeen, who had the second-best-selling album in Korea after BTS, will soon join the service alongside BTS, Tomorrow X Together and GFriend), working with local retailers in large markets like the U.S. and Japan to cut down on shipping costs for company goods, developing a BTS-inspired drama TV show, and having BTS star in a program to help foreigners learn the Korean language.

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While there was a lot to take in from the flashy hour-long presentation, one of the ultimate takeaways was Big Hit’s emphasis on fans and how their experience was the No. 1 priority, calling fans the most integral part of the “Big Hit Winning Formula.”

Perhaps the most interesting business reveal was how Big Hit Entertainment proper is not trying to be the one-stop-shop for all things Korean-pop entertainment but instead work with its strong team of partners and sub-labels, and create specific specialties among them. Acquiring and creating new label branches is nothing new in the industry, but having labels focus on different aspects like Source with girl groups, Belift with international groups, and, presumably, Big Hit with boy groups, makes for a fuller fledged and thought-out system. It seems like each division will be able to focus on becoming the best label for its specific type of group, marking a stark difference to most Korean-entertainment agencies who hope to diversify their rosters as quickly as possible. Then, the non-music-specific entities like Big Hit Three Sixty (that handles concerts, album distribution, partnerships, media content and more), beNX (which seems to specialize in digital platforms including running the Big Hit official shop) and Big Hit IP (customer service) can carry the label contents even further.

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2020 should be another exciting year for Big Hit as BTS prepares its new album Map of the Soul: 7 for release later this month and will embark on an accompanying stadium tour, while Tomorrow X Together was revealed to also be preparing for a new album, and GFriend released their new Labyrinth EP this week.

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Big Hit Home entertainment– the significantly
international record label and agency house to artists like BTS and Tomorrow X Together– shared updates of major earnings development for the past year while also laying out the foundation for their future strategies. Happening in Seoul on February 4, the company held their “Big Hit Corporate Informing With the Community” featuring speakers like Success co-CEOs Bang Si-Hyuk and Lenzo Yoon, the latter of whom just recently took the red carpet with BTS at the2020 Grammy Awards last month.

Bang shared how the past year saw Success preparing to establish itself as a multi-label, multi-business company which included major relocations like getting the Source Music label( house to chart-topping lady group GFriend) and developing a new joint label with Korean-entertainment powerhouse CJ ENM called Belift. Citing music sales, video material, service diversity and more, Big Hit reported their revenue grew to $4946 million( or5879 billion Korean won) with an operating revenue of$82 million(975 billion KRW).

This nearly doubles the$254million(3014 billion KRW) in profits from2018 in addition to a solid boost from last year’s operation profit of$672 million (798 billion KRW).

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Part of this development has been thanks to Success Entertainment’s growth into brand-new service as part of their” Big Hit Labels “household that consists of the aforementioned Source Music and Belift. Brand-new service endeavors for these artists, along with new groups, are all on the horizon the company exposed.

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Yoon Hyuk Choi, Vice President of Belift, talked about his vision of bringing” K-pop into the mainstream” while seeking to implant the K-pop training and preparation procedure in the international market. A brand-new boy band made up of multinational members has plans to debut within the year through Belift.

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On The Other Hand So Sung Jin, president of Source Music, shared that a brand-new woman group has actually been formed with plans to debut in 2021 after a successful “Plus International Audition” program together with Big Hit. With GFriend as their first artist, Source revealed their wish to end up being the “No. 1 girl-group label” with their new partner in Big Hit.

Last But Not Least, Young Jae Shin, Vice President of Big Hit Labels, unveiled prepare for Success’s artists that include launching a brand-new kid band in 2022 and, more right away, the first world tour for Big Hit’s youngest kid band Tomorrow X Together.

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Success also pointed to other locations of development including growing the number of artists to their recently developed social-media fanclub app WeVerse (popular young boy band Seventeen, who had the second-best-selling album in Korea after BTS, will soon sign up with the service along with BTS, Tomorrow X Together and GFriend), dealing with local retailers in big markets like the U.S. and Japan to reduce shipping costs for business items, developing a BTS-inspired drama TELEVISION show, and having BTS star in a program to help immigrants learn the Korean language.

While there was a lot to take in from the fancy hour-long discussion, one of the supreme takeaways was Big Struck’s focus on fans and how their experience was the No. 1 priority, calling fans the most important part of the “Success Winning Formula.”

Perhaps the most fascinating service expose was how Big Hit Home entertainment correct is not trying to be the one-stop-shop for all things Korean-pop home entertainment however rather work with its strong group of partners and sub-labels, and create particular specializeds among them. Acquiring and creating brand-new label branches is absolutely nothing brand-new in the industry, however having labels focus on different elements like Source with lady groups, Belift with global groups, and, most likely, Big Hit with boy groups, produces a fuller fledged and thought-out system. It looks like each division will be able to focus on becoming the best label for its specific kind of group, marking a stark difference to most Korean-entertainment agencies who intend to diversify their rosters as quickly as possible. Then, the non-music-specific entities like Success 3 Sixty (that manages concerts, album circulation, partnerships, media content and more), beNX (which appears to specialize in digital platforms consisting of running the Success official store) and Big Hit IP (customer support) can carry the label contents even further.

2020 should be another amazing year for Success as BTS prepares its brand-new album Map of the Soul: 7 for release later on this month and will start an accompanying stadium trip, while Tomorrow X Together was revealed to also be getting ready for a brand-new album, and GFriend launched their new Maze EP today.

Angie Ronson

Angie Ronson is Editor-in-Chief at THRS. She covers the transformative impact of new technology on all sectors.