Big Hit Entertainment CEO Bang Si Hyuk has sold a portion of his stake in Big Hit Entertainment and has obtained 65 billion won ($57.2 million USD) in cash. If Big Hit Entertainment files for an IPO (initial public offering) in the future, he will become the wealthiest man in the entertainment industry, surpassing SM Entertainment‘s Lee Soo Man.
On March 25, it was revealed that CEO Bang sold a 7.83% share last year as he was attracting large-scale investments. As a result, his total 50.88% stake went down to 43.06% but he gained an approximate 65 billion won ($57.2 million USD) in cash in return.
Big Hit Entertainment received a whopping 201.4 billion won ($174.5 million USD) and 104 billion won ($91.6 million USD) from Netmarble and STIC Investment respectively last year. The enterprise value of each company was 800 billion won ($704.9 million USD) and 870 billion ($766.6 million USD) won each. During this time, CEO Bang sold a portion of his stake to shareholders including Netmarble.
Choi Yoo Jung, vice president of Big Hit Entertainment, also sold a 2.39% stake in the agency and earned approximately 20 billion won ($17.6 million USD). According to an affiliate of an investment bank, the sales of the stake was in accordance with the judgment that it would benefit the development of the company and all existing shareholders agreed.
Meanwhile, Bang Si Hyuk still holds the title of largest shareholder. Netmarble (25.22%) and STIC Investment (12.24%) has also become major shareholders. LB Investment, who succeeded in gaining approximately 75 billion won ($66 million USD) by selling a portion of their stake also holds 2.38%.
Last year, Big Hit Entertainment earned a total revenue of 214.2 billion won ($190 million USD) with net profits of 50.2 billion won ($44 million USD). Their total revenue and net profits increased by 132% and 105% each. In the case of net profits, Big Hit’s figures surpassed that of SM Entertainment, YG Entertainment and JYP Entertainment. As a result, Big Hit is speculated to have the highest value among the entertainment companies if it goes public.
In order to overcome the company’s heavy reliance on BTS, Big Hit has been making various efforts to diversify their business. They’ve established a joint venture company with CJ ENM called Belift Lab to discover and train new global artists and debuted their newest boy group, TXT, this month.