The future of HYBE as well as K-pop – it’s not a castle that can easily be shaken by the wind.
Jin, a member of the global boy group BTS, will enlist in the military on December 13th. He will enter the boot camp of a military division in Yeoncheon-gun, Gyeonggi-do, receive 5 weeks of training, then be deployed to a front-line unit to carry out his military service.
Jin, who was born in 1992 and just turned 30 years old this year, received a recommendation from the Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism to postpone his enlistment until the end of this year under the revised Military Service Act in 2020. However, he decided to apply for the cancellation of military postponement and joined the army.
#Which BTS member will be the next to enlist after Jin?
Referring to this issue, BTS’s agency HYBE said on Weverse in October, “BTS has prepared carefully to fulfill their military service. Other BTS members will also enlist sequentially according to their respective schedules”.
There was once a hot controversy over whether BTS would be exempted from military service exemption. However, the controversy ended when the group announced their enlistment plan. After wrapping up the “Yet to Come in Busan” concert on October 15th, BTS’s agency announced, “It is now the most appropriate time because the concert has already been completed”.
Earlier in June, BTS members also announced that they would temporarily suspend group activities and focus on solo promotions. Jin, RM and J-Hope have been releasing solo songs ahead of their upcoming enlistment plan. While the public was wondering when BTS would resume activities as a whole group, HYBE said, “It’s hard to specify the exact time but the members hope to resume group activities in 2025”.
BTS has broken many records not only in Korea but also in the global market. With outstanding achievements, such as topping Billboard charts among world-famous singers, and winning numerous prestigious awards, BTS set a new standard for K-pop’s future generations.
However, each member’s performance as a soloist is still short of that when BTS carried out promotions as a complete group. As such, attention is paid to the changes in the K-pop market in the so-called “Post BTS” era, which is open due to the temporary suspension of BTS’s group activities and the members’ enlistments.
#BTS’s hiatus: It’s not the end, but a new start!
In this regard, experts are giving positive outlooks and expectations.
In a report about predictions on the performance of BIG 4 – SM, JYP, YG, and HYBE, researcher Lee Hye In cited rookies and 5th-generation boy groups, localized idols, and the growth in the scale for global tours as the major points in investment for 2023.
These predictions were made based on the fact that groups that debuted after 2020 have shown explosive album sales since their early days, and the expansion of K-pop fandoms in the content era. To back up these arguments, the researcher mentioned existing K-pop powerhouses, such as BLACKPINK and TWICE, and also outstanding 4th-generation girl groups, such as aespa, (G)I-DLE, IVE, NewJeans, and LE SSERAFIM. In the case of boy groups, there are Stray Kids, TXT, TREASURE, Enhypen, NCT 127, NCT DREAM, etc.
An analyst at Shinhan Investment & Securities also expressed a similar opinion pointed out “the rising popularity of girl group post-BTS” and “global fandom” as the elements for the future performance of K-pop.
Shortly after the announcement of BTS Jin’s enlistment, many investors raised concerns about the economic loss due to BTS’s hiatus. However, the recently released outlooks by experts prove that K-pop will continue to develop well even in the “post-BTS” era.