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South Korean music company Hybe enjoyed another bumper year in 2022, with its revenues growing 41.6% to 1.78tn won (around $1.36bn at current exchange rates.

The figures included a 47% spike in revenues from recorded music, and a whopping 470.1% increase in concert revenues thanks to a bounceback from Covid-19 lockdowns in 2021. There was growth across the board, with Hybe’s superfan platform Weverse ending 2022 with 8.4 million monthly active users, up from 6.8 million a year before.

Hybe was also keen to stress the increasingly-global nature of its business. A slide in its financials report noted that in 2017, South Korea accounted for 72% of its revenues, with Japan contributing 14% and North America 9%. However, in 2022, Korea’s share was 33%, North America’s 32% and Japan’s 28%.

K-Pop stars BTS loom large in this growth, of course, but Seventeen, Tomorrow X Together, Enhyphen and Le Sserafim have also been fuelling Hybe’s business – with BTS and Tomorrow X Together both appearing in the US year-end album sales chart.

Hybe’s recent acquisition of US hip-hop label Quality Control will bring further momentum to its business in that market.

Given North America’s share of Hybe’s revenues was just a single percentage point behind Korea’s in 2022, it’s not outlandish to wonder whether the former region could overtake the latter in its 2023 numbers.

Music Ally’s next Learn Live webinar will help you understand what’s required for artists to thrive in new international markets!

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Stuart Dredge

Music Ally's Head of Insight

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