Big Hit Entertainment has acquired Scooter Braun’s Ithaca Holdings in a billion dollar deal.
In the same announcement, Big Hit revealed it has rebranded as Hybe.
The deal brings together a range of services including management, label services and publishing.
It means that the South Korean music and entertainment giant behind BTS has bolstered its roster to include Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande, J Balvin, Demi Lovato, Thomas Rhett, Florida Georgia Line and Lady A.
It’s also a major boost for Hybe’s artists in the US. As well as BTS, its roster includes TXT, Seventeen, Nu'est, Gfriend, ENHYPEN and Zico.
Through its wholly owned subsidiary Hybe America, Hybe will acquire a 100% stake in Ithaca Holdings and its properties such as SB Projects and Big Machine Label Group. Ithaca Holdings CEO Scooter Braun will join the board of Hybe, while Scott Borchetta will remain CEO of Big Machine Label Group.
Hybe is investing 1.07 trillion won ($950 million) into its US unit to acquire Ithaca Holdings. In a separate regulatory filing in Seoul, the company said its US unit will pay a total of $1.05 billion for the merger.
Hybe chairman & CEO Bang Si-Hyuk said: "The inevitable joining of Hybe and Ithaca Holdings marks the start of a new adventure no one could have possibly imagined. The two companies will work closely together leveraging our proven track records of success, know-how, and expertise to create synergy, transcend borders and break down cultural barriers. Please look forward to the endless possibilities of Hybe and Ithaca Holdings, and the new paradigm the partnership will establish in the music industry.”
Scooter Braun added: "This will be the first time Hybe's groundbreaking systems and curation will be integrated in the US market at the onset of an artist's career. Plus, it will help us to continue to further the careers of the artists we already work with. Global opportunities for artists become exponential with this partnership. This is an opportunity for us to make history and further innovate the music industry and revolutionise the game itself. Its implications for the business will be monumentous for a long time to come. I am incredibly grateful for chairman Bang's friendship and his willingness to support the creative journey of an artist."
Allison Kaye, partner, Ithaca Holdings, said: "For 15 years, I have worked alongside Scooter helping him build a best-in-class entertainment company and phenomenal team of which we are both immensely proud. We have launched amazing careers and brands and released incredible content into the world. We are ecstatic to partner with chairman Bang and Hybe to further the global reach of both companies and the artists as we continue to grow our company and their careers across entertainment, technology, commerce and content."
As part of the transaction, The Carlyle Group will sell its significant minority stake in Ithaca Holdings, after initially investing in the company in 2017 by way of its Carlyle Partners VI fund.