Netmarble Games invests big in BTS agency

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Netmarble Games invests big in BTS agency


Netmarble Games, South Korea’s top mobile game developer, has made a major investment in the entertainment agency behind K-pop sensation BTS, corporate sources said Thursday.

In a regulatory filing issued Wednesday, Netmarble Games said it will acquire a 25.71 percent stake in Big Hit Entertainment for 201.43 billion won ($189.3 million).

The latest decision made the game company the second-largest shareholder of the entertainment agency managing the mega popular group.

“The investment aims to expand the synergistic effect between Netmarble Games and Big Hit Entertainment, which can strengthen the footholds of both companies in the global arena,” the game company said in a statement.

The two entities have been in partnership to develop a new mobile game titled “BTS World,” where users can manage and train BTS members. The so-called realistic cinematic game is expected to launch in the first half of this year, according to Netmarble.

The seven-member boy band, also known as the Bangtan Boys, has won widespread prominence and become one of the leading groups in K-pop. Their 2017 album “Love Yourself: Her” was a massive success, selling over 1.49 million copies since its release in September. It became the first K-pop group to win the “Top Social Artist” from the Billboard Music Awards last year and broke new ground by performing at the American Music Awards. Yonhap
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