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K-Pop star makers to buy Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande management


(ATF) The svengalis behind K-Pop sensation BTS hopes nose to work its magic on Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande and other major stars. 

HYBE, the agency that helped create the K-pop phenomenon announced it s is investing 1.07 trillion won ($950 million) into its US unit to acquire Ithaca Holdings, headed by American media entrepreneur Scooter Braun.

In a separate regulatory filing in Seoul, the company said its US unit will pay a total of $1.05 billion to bondholders and others for the merger.

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The South Korean firm will “acquire through its wholly owned subsidiary HYBE America, a 100 percent stake in Ithaca Holdings,” it said in a statement.

Braun will join the board of HYBE and artists of both entities – including BTS, Bieber and Grande – will participate in the capital increase of the South Korean company, it added. 

“This is an opportunity for us to make history and further innovate the music industry,” Braun said of the merger.

BTS has ascended to global superstardom since the boy band’s debut in 2013, and the single “Dynamite” entered the Billboard Hot 100 at number one last year, making them the first South Korean act to top the US chart.

In October, HYBE made a multi-billion-dollar stock market debut.

The merger was to “accelerate its entrance into the global market”, the company said in one of the regulatory filings. 

  • Reporting by AFP

Mark McCord

Mark McCord is a financial journalist with more than three decades experience writing and editing at global news wires including Bloomberg and AFP, as well as daily newspapers in Hong Kong, Sydney and Melbourne. He has covered some of the biggest breaking news events in recent years including the Enron scandal, the New York terrorist attacks and the Iraq War. He is based in the UK. You can tweet to Mark at @MarkMcC64371550.

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