Hybe Posts Double-Digit Q4 Revenue Growth Despite BTS Hiatus

HYBE Flint
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HYBE Flint
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Photo Credit: HYBE Corporation

Notwithstanding K-pop sensation BTS’ hiatus, Hybe achieved double-digit revenue growth – and suffered a more than $144 million net loss – during Q4 2022, according to a newly released earnings report.

The Quality Control owner Hybe unveiled its Q4 2022 showing in an English-language breakdown today. According to the analysis, Hybe generated a total of ₩535.33 billion ($409.38 million at the present exchange rate) during October, November, and December of last year.

This figure reflects a 20.16 percent quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) jump and a 16.90 percent year-over-year (YoY) improvement, and Hybe identified 76.36 percent YoY growth on the “artist direct – involvement” side, which generated ₩289.41 billion ($221.37 million) in total.

Within the category, albums are said to have accounted for ₩149.12 billion ($114.13 million), up 15.42 percent QoQ and 74.08 percent YoY, while concerts turned in a 36.92 percent QoQ and a 41.81 percent YoY boost to approach ₩64.67 billion ($49.49 million).

Meanwhile, “ads, appearances and management” rounded out Hybe’s Q4 2022 artist-direct income, hiking 153.71 percent QoQ and 128.12 percent YoY to hit ₩75.62 billion ($57.88 million). But artist-indirect revenue, despite increasing by 2.78 percent QoQ, slipped by 16.31 percent YoY and totaled ₩245.92 billion ($188.21 million), the document shows.

As part of the total, Hybe communicated that fourth-quarter merch and licensing revenue had declined (by 1.94 percent QoQ and 10.30 percent YoY) to ₩112.49 billion ($86.09 million) amid the absence of a unified BTS. Similarly, “contents” revenue grew by 7.34 percent QoQ but slipped by 25.61 percent YoY to finish at ₩115.07 billion ($88.07 million) in Q4.

Finally, Hybe stated that fan club and other revenue had totaled ₩18.36 billion ($14.05 million) during Q4, up 5.85 percent QoQ and 33.28 percent YoY. WeVerse’s monthly active users are said to have surged by over 20 percent to crack 8.4 million during Q4, when average revenue per user climbed modestly from Q3 2022 but “payment amount trend” slipped from the prior three-month window.

The Seoul-headquartered company’s operating expenses swelled by almost 26 percent quarterly and from Q4 2021, to ₩483.66 billion ($370.16 million), the report shows, and as mentioned at the outset, the acquisition-minded business’s net loss expanded to ₩188.75 billion ($144.46 million) on the quarter.

Hybe also took the opportunity to tout its 2022 “geographic revenue exposure,” indicating in a pie chart that one-third of the year’s total income had derived from customers in South Korea, against 32 percent from North America, 28 percent from Japan, one percent from China, and six percent from remaining markets.

Hybe relayed that it had ₩1.95 trillion ($1.49 billion) in total liabilities as of December, and when the market closed today, the company’s stock (KRX: 352820) was worth ₩182,100 ($139.37) per share. Separately, the BTS agency’s CEO recently doubled down on his intention to take over rival SM Entertainment.