HYBE seals SM Entertainment deal: Bang Si Hyuk's label acquires Lee Soo Man's remaining shares for 78.1 million USD

HYBE Corporation secures a 3.68% stake in SM Entertainment shares for 104 billion KRW from founder Lee Soo Man. Despite a 50% premium per share, HYBE strengthens its position in the K-Pop industry. Read on!

Published on Feb 29, 2024  |  05:47 PM IST |  181.1K
HYBE's Chairman Bang Si Hyuk, SM Entertainment's Lee Soo Man; Image Courtesy: Bang Si Hyuk's Instagram, SM Entertainment
HYBE's Chairman Bang Si Hyuk, SM Entertainment's Lee Soo Man; Image Courtesy: Bang Si Hyuk's Instagram, SM Entertainment
Key Highlight
  • Bang Si Hyuk’s HYBE acquired Lee Soo Man's SM Entertainment shares
  • More details about Bang Si Hyuk and Lee Soo Man

HYBE Corporation has recently confirmed its acquisition of 868,948 shares of SM Entertainment from Lee Soo Man, amounting to approximately 78.1 million USD. This strategic move follows their earlier purchase of a 14.8% stake in SM Entertainment and fulfills the terms of the contract regarding Lee Soo Man's stock purchase rights. The deal is set to finalize on March 7, solidifying HYBE's 12.6% ownership in the prominent K-Pop label.

Bang Si Hyuk’s HYBE locks deal on 12.6% ownership of Lee Soo Man's SM Entertainment

On February 28, HYBE Corporation, the South Korean entertainment conglomerate, announced a significant move in the K-Pop industry. The company revealed plans to acquire an additional 869,948 shares of SM Entertainment stocks for a staggering 104.3 billion KRW (approximately 78.2 million USD). This strategic move comes as a follow-up to HYBE's earlier acquisition of a 14.8% stake in SM Entertainment in early 2023, during a high-stakes bidding war against Kakao.

The recent acquisition stems from Lee Soo Man's decision to exercise his stock purchase rights, with HYBE fulfilling its contractual obligation. Notably, the deal involves purchasing shares at 120,000 KRW per share, a price significantly higher than the current market value of 79,500 KRW per share.

Following this transaction, HYBE is set to hold a 12.6% stake in SM Entertainment, solidifying its influence in the K-Pop industry. The acquisition, totaling 868,948 shares, marks the completion of Lee Soo Man's divestment from SM Entertainment, as he sells off his remaining shares to HYBE.


Speculation has arisen about potential motives behind this acquisition, with rumors suggesting that Lee Soo Man and HYBE may be considering reacquiring SM Entertainment amid reported tensions between the entertainment label and its largest shareholder, Kakao. The finalization of the acquisition is scheduled for March 7, adding another chapter to the evolving dynamics of the K-Pop business landscape.

About Bang Si Hyuk

Bang Si Hyuk, professionally known as Hitman Bang, is a prominent figure in the South Korean entertainment industry. Born on August 9, 1972, he is the founder of BIGHIT MUSIC (formerly Big Hit Entertainment) and HYBE Corporation, serving as the chairman of the latter. As one of the wealthiest individuals in South Korea, Mr. Bang's estimated net worth reached 3.2 billion USD as of July 2021. With a background in music composition, he co-wrote songs for various artists before establishing Big Hit Entertainment in 2005. His pivotal role in nurturing BTS contributed significantly to his success, making him a key player in the global music scene.


About Lee Soo Man

Lee Soo Man, born on June 18, 1952, is a South Korean business executive and record producer renowned as the founder of SM Entertainment, a leading multinational entertainment company in Seoul. Beginning his career as a singer in 1971, Mr. Lee's musical journey included stints in bands like April and May. In 1989, he established SM Entertainment, evolving it into a powerhouse with a holistic approach to artist development. Lee Soo Man's vision reshaped the Korean pop music industry. Despite resigning from SM's board in 2010, he maintained influence through his production company. In 2022, amid corporate disputes, Lee Soo Man sold his stake to Hybe Corporation, subsequently establishing Blooming Grace.

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About The Author

Saumya is Journalism & Mass-Communication graduate with a specialization in digital journalism. She comes with nearly a


Credits: SPOTV, HYBE, SM Entertainment

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