Members of the South Korean K-pop group BTS will become multi-millionaires once their record label Big Hit Entertainment launches its initial public offering (IPO) in October.
The increasing demand for Big Hit Entertainment shares has boosted its market valuation to £3.2 billion, based on pricing at the top of the expected price range.
Big Hit founder Bang Si-hyuk, who owns 43% of the management label, will become a billionaire while all seven members of BTS will become multi-millionaires. Bang gave each BTS member 68,385 shares, worth £6.2 million in total, last August.
Big Hit’s share is currently priced at between 105,000 to 135,000 won or £70.03 to £88.70. The record label is expecting to raise approximately £638.3 million with the sale of 7.13 million new shares once it is listed on South Korea’s Stock Exchange, known as the KOSPI, on October 15.
It set a new record when underwriters were able to find investors to take a stake in the firm in just hours after order books opened. The demand for the shares was 1,000 times higher than the available stock.
A CNBC report indicated that die-hard BTS fans in South Korea were planning to purchase at least one share in Big Hit to express their support to their favorite K-pop group. The Big Hit IPO will be the largest IPO in South Korea in three years.
In 2019, 97% of Big Hit’s sales were generated by BTS and the group accounts for 88% of sales this year.
The huge support for the record label’s IPO can be considered a sign that BTS’ popularity has not dwindled despite the cancellation of the group’s world tour due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The group, comprised of Kim Tae-hyung known as V, Jung Ho-seok known as J-Hope, Kim Nam-joon known as RM, Kim Seok-kin known as Jin, Park Ji-min, Jeon Jung-kook and Min Yoon-gi known as Suga, is also facing the risk that some of its members may soon have to do two years of compulsory military service in South Korea.
In its seven-year history, the K-pop band has broken numerous records. Its latest record was in August, when the single Dynamite became the most viewed YouTube video in 24 hours, garnering 101.1 million views in a single day.
With the same single, BTS became the first Korean artists to top the Billboard Hot 100 chart. South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in praised the group, saying they were writing a “new chapter in K-pop history”.
BTS held an online concert last June and it set another Guinness World record for the most viewed music concert live stream, with 756,000 people watching from over 100 countries.
The group’s members gives credit of their success to their loyal international fan base, called ARMY, who have helped make BTS the most tweeted-about music group from March to September this year.
They keep in contact with their fans through social media, posting a stream of pictures and videos. RM said: “We are so humbled to achieve all these incredible feats, including the Official Singles Chart. A big thank you to our ARMY! ‘Dynamite’ was created in the hopes of bringing some vibrant energy that the world needs right now. We are extremely happy to see people around the world enjoying it.”
BTS fans are now waiting for the upcoming release of their second album of the year, BE, on November 20.