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“Album sales will decrease, don’t be optimistic” vs. “It’s not a situation worth worrying about.”

Major entertainment companies respond by launching a large number of new artists and expanding overseas tours

(Seoul = Larose.VIP) Reporter Lee Tae-su and Choi Jae-seo = Concerns are rising in the new year regarding the K-pop market, which has continued to grow rapidly in recent years.

This is because album exports to China, which gave rise to the ‘K-pop crisis theory’ in the second half of last year, have not fully recovered, and a decline in album sales of some singers has been detected.

The music industry predicts that the market situation will not be easy this year due to the absence of BTS and the lack of performance venues.

BTS

BTS

◇ Concerns about reverse base effect after the biggest boom… Will exports to China rebound?

According to the music industry on the 18th, such concerns ironically stem from the fact that K-pop has achieved record-high performance over the past few years.

Based on the Korea Customs Service’s import and export trade statistics, last year’s K-pop album export amount was $292.31 million (approximately 387 billion won), a 25.4% increase from the previous year, breaking an all-time high.

Additionally, according to an analysis by Circle Chart’s senior researcher Kim Jin-woo, last year’s total album sales (based on the total sales from 1st to 400th place) were 110.58 million copies, an increase of 50.1% compared to the previous year. This is the first time in history that annual album sales exceed 100 million units.

Amid this boom, the first to fifth places in the music industry in first-week album sales (based on Hanteo Chart), led by Seventeen, all came out last year.

For this reason, there are many doubts whether the company will be able to overcome the reverse base effect and continue its rapid growth in the new year.

An official from a large entertainment company predicted, “Album sales this year are likely to decrease unless there is a groundbreaking change.”

In fact, group A, which released a new album in the new year, saw its first week sales decrease by about 40% compared to its previous album, and singer B also decreased by about 32%.

In addition, the fact that the Chinese market, a ‘large K-pop customer’, has not fully recovered is also a variable.

Last year, exports of popular albums amounted to $33.9 million (about 45.3 billion won), a 34.0% decrease from the previous year. Fortunately, exports last month amounted to $2.097 million (about 2.8 billion won), up 70.3% compared to the same period last year.

Jinwoo Kim, a senior research fellow, said, “Exports to China fell sharply between June and October of last year, and have been recovering since then, but the problem is that both do not know the reason.” He added, “I think there is a ‘shadow regulation’ in addition to the Chinese real estate recession. “If the number of K-pop fans has decreased, it must decrease gradually, because in one month last year, the number decreased by 97%,” he analyzed.

Seventeen Concert ‘Follow’

Seventeen Concert ‘Follow’

◇ There is no BTS… There is no concert hall that can make a ‘real profit’

Another negative factor is that BTS, which was leading the K-pop market, cannot be expected to participate in team activities this year as all members began military service at the end of last year.

BTS members carried out active solo activities last year, with Jimin and Jungkook each reaching #1 on the US Billboard main single chart ‘Hot 100’, but it is difficult to expect even this this year due to military service.

Of course, there is a possibility that Jin and J-Hope, who enlisted first, will pursue solo activities as they are discharged in June and October, respectively.

In addition, Seventeen, whose stock price is rising at the highest level in recent years, is also expected to enlist members S.Coups and Jeonghan born in 1995 this year.

Another problem is that concerts, which are a major source of income in addition to album sales, are also not in an easy situation.

Jamsil Main Stadium has begun remodeling work, and Gocheok Sky Dome and Seoul World Cup Stadium are not easy to rent when the baseball and soccer seasons begin, respectively.

It seems to be related to this situation that Seventeen became the first idol group to hold a solo concert at Incheon Asiad Main Stadium. In Seoul, it is impossible to find a suitable performance hall ‘suitable for the weight class’.

An official from a large entertainment company said, “Even if the KSPO Dome and Inspire Arena are full, they can only accommodate 15,000 people. No matter what we try, we can’t create a large concert hall.” He added, “The number of concerts (in Korea) this year is likely to increase, but (due to the size) there is a lot of profit.” “It doesn’t look like it’s going to fly,” he said.

JYP’s new girl group shines

JYP’s new girl group shines

◇ “You have to tighten your belt and work hard”… Agencies seeding new talent

Accordingly, in response to the decline in album sales this year, each entertainment company is expected to actively participate in overseas concert tours and introduce new artists to debut in large numbers.

Hive has debuted or is preparing to debut TWS, Eyelet, and Cat’s Eye, JYP has VCHA and Nex-G, and SM has NCT Wish, Naibis, a British boy group, and a new girl group.

It is very unusual for large music agencies to release a large number of new artists in the same year, as if they had made a promise.

An official from another large agency said, “It is true that the conditions this year are not as good as last year, so we are not in a position to be optimistic. Each agency will have to tighten their belts and work hard this year.”

NCT Wish

NCT Wish

This official also predicted, “I think the K-pop market will be restored by each entertainment company releasing a lot of new artists and enriching the lineup.”

Senior researcher Kim Jin-woo said, “The K-pop music market is improving its structure, with exports diversifying mainly to large global markets such as the US, Japan, the UK, and Germany. It is true that China is a big variable, but I think the bottom has already been reached.” I pointed out.

He then predicted, “Even without BTS, total album sales last year were close to 120 million copies, so it is not a situation worth worrying about as we can make up for it this year as well from other sources. Even if sales decline, the 100 million units will be maintained.”

tsl@yna.co.kr

Report to KakaoTalk okjebo 2024/02/18 07:00 Sent

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