Saturday, June 15, 2024

Is K Pop Pooped Out? BTS Done? Korean Record Company Owner Says Growth is Slowing, “Not as Hot in the Market as You Might Perceive”


CNN’s Richard Quest has scored a scoop on his trip to Seoul interviewing Hybe chief Bang Si-Hyuk.

In a wide ranging interview, Bang tells Quest that K Pop, the Korean pop music that turned boy band BTS into a world wide phenom, is slowing down.

Bang tells Quest: “Globally, it’s not occupying much of the market. On the other hand, Latin music and Afrobeats are very rapidly growing. So being where we are, it is more urgent to increase the exposure.”


Asked whether he was worried about the popularity of K-pop eventually fizzling out altogether, Bang said yes.

That is my major concern. In fact, looking at our export indicators and streaming growth, the slowdown in growth is very clear,” he noted.

The executive said he hoped the lag was “temporary,” caused by the recent start of military service in South Korea for members of his marquee act, BTS.

“But I doubt that.”

Bang says he’s looking at expanding into other areas, as well as American music companies, etc. He recently merged his company with Scooter Braun’s Ithaca Holdings based on Braun’s success with Justin Bieber, Demi Lovato, and Ariana Grande. But Bieber just cancelled yet another world tour and seems retired for the moment. Lovato’s records aren’t selling. Grande is on hiatus.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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