When it was revealed on Monday that members of the K-pop band BTS would be enlisting in the South Korean military, the group’s fans were devastated, as this would prevent any future tours or music releases.
Conscription for the seven members, which Seoul permitted them to postpone till 2020, could have a financial impact.
The Grammy-nominated boy band, which consists of RM, Jin, SUGA, j-hope, Jimin, V, and Jung Kook, has established itself as a commercial juggernaut and a success in the entertainment business since releasing its debut album nine years ago.
According to the Hyundai Research Institute, BTS contributed more than $3.6 billion annually to the South Korean economy in 2018, which is the same amount as 26 medium businesses.
Additionally, according to experts at Hyundai, the boy band brought in one of every 13 tourists to South Korea in 2017 and produced an estimated $1.1 billion in exports of consumer products like apparel and cosmetics in only one calendar year.
Analysts predicted that if BTS maintained their popularity between 2014 and 2023, the band would have contributed 41.8 trillion won ($29.4 billion) to the South Korean economy.
The band’s members have benefitted financially from the band’s commercial success. According to Forbes, BTS’s total net worth by 2020 was $50 million.
The markets and BTS
The group has demonstrated its potential to shake up the South Korean financial markets in addition to bringing money to the nation.
Shares of BTS’s management business, HYBE, lost a quarter of their value after the company announced its pause back in June, and the stock dropped to its lowest level since the company went public two years earlier.
Shares of HYBE fell 2.5% on Monday when it was revealed that the band members had enlisted in the military.
In a statement issued by record label Big Hit Music on Monday, the band—the first K-pop act to top the Billboard 200—said that its members were “proud to serve” their nation and would reunite as a group “around 2025.”