HYBE has achieved a historic milestone as the first South Korean entertainment company to reach an annual revenue of 2 trillion won (approximately 1.54 billion US dollars), bolstered by its solid multi-label system and explosive growth in album sales and concert sectors.
On February 26, HYBE announced its 2023 consolidated revenue of 2.1781 trillion won and operating profit of 295.8 billion won, marking a 22.6% increase in sales and a 24.9% increase in operating profit compared to the previous year. Both figures are record highs, with a 3-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 31.7% in sales and 24.7% in operating profit.
The achievements were led by the activities of BTS members, currently serving in the military, and SEVENTEEN, who set a new record for K-pop album sales. Remarkable performances by second-year group NewJeans and the world tour of LE SSERAFIM also contributed significantly to the growth.
HYBE's artists sold 43.6 million albums (according to Circle Chart) in 2023, doubling the previous year's figures, with a 38% market share on Circle Chart for albums entered. SEVENTEEN updated their own K-pop album sales record with a cumulative 16 million albums sold. Solo albums by BTS members also proved their global influence with 8.7 million sales worldwide. Albums by TOMORROW X TOGETHER (6.5 million), NewJeans (4.26 million), and ENHYPEN (3.88 million) were also well-received.
Streaming achievements were equally impressive, with notable performances by SEVENTEEN, Jungkook decorating the Billboard Hot 100 with "3D" and "Standing Next to You", NewJeans entering the Hot 100 with five songs, and LE SSERAFIM's "Perfect Night" making a year-end Billboard chart reversal.
In North America, artists from HYBE America's country music label Big Machine Label Group (BMLG) and hip-hop label QC Music maintained strong streaming performances, leading to a roughly 80% year-over-year increase in HYBE's digital music sales, totaling about 300 billion won (approximately 230 million US dollars.)
The dual engine of album sales and streaming revenue brought HYBE's record and digital music sales close to 1 trillion won at 970 billion won last year. The standout growth in streaming has led to a reclassification of the "album" category to include digital sales under the broader term "sound source."
Post-pandemic effects also saw a 40% increase in concert revenue last year. This growth was fueled by an increase in the number of artists performing and total shows conducted, including sold-out tours by BTS's Suga, SEVENTEEN's "Follow" tour, the first North American stadium and Japanese dome tours by TOMORROW X TOGETHER and ENHYPEN, and LE SSERAFIM's first world tour.
The global superfandom platform Weverse maintained a stable monthly average user (MAU) count of 10 million, thanks to the continuous addition of domestic and international artists. The number of artist communities on Weverse increased by 72% year-over-year to 122 at the end of last year, with Weverse Live sessions also on the rise.
HYBE plans to debut numerous artists this year, enriching its lineup with debuts from PLEDIS Entertainment's TWS, I’LL-IT, and KATSEYE, alongside active album promotions from existing HYBE artists starting in the second quarter.
Additionally, HYBE America's management division, Scooter Braun Projects, signed new contracts last year and anticipates significant revenue growth with the upcoming release of Ariana Grande's album this year.
Alongside its financial report, HYBE also announced a shareholder value enhancement plan with a dividend of 700 won per share, totaling 29.2 billion won, reflecting its commitment to prioritizing shareholder value despite being in a growth phase.
In a novel approach, HYBE applied Supertone's AI audio technology to its earnings report conference call, using TTS (Text to Speech) technology based on big data to vividly replicate CEO Park Ji-won's voice, capturing attention for its innovative application.