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HYBE to launch SIX more groups by 2023, fans say 'quantity does not mean quality'

Fans weigh in with split reactions to the news of HYBE Labels launching six more K-pop groups by 2023 under its subsidiary labels
BTS, TXT, Enhypen, and Le Sserafim are some of the K-pop groups under HYBE's subsidiary labels (@bts_bighit, @TXT_bighit, @ENHYPEN, @le_sserafim/Twitter)
BTS, TXT, Enhypen, and Le Sserafim are some of the K-pop groups under HYBE's subsidiary labels (@bts_bighit, @TXT_bighit, @ENHYPEN, @le_sserafim/Twitter)

SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA: The K-pop genre has turned into such a lucrative industry that labels are debuting newer and newer groups with alarming regularity. Over the last year alone, the industry saw the debut of more than 50 new groups as well as more subunits from pre-existing groups. Meanwhile, HYBE, the multi-label conglomerate, has debuted not one but two K-pop girl groups in the year 2022 alone. Following its subsidiary label Source Music's Le Sserafim, HYBE recently debuted the shockingly popular and successful five-member girl group NewJeans as recently as August 1.

Now it has been reported that under its subsidiary labels, HYBE plans on launching six more K-pop groups by 2023, proving that the competition in K-pop is going to get even more cut-throat. HYBE (initially Big Hit Entertainment) debuted BTS in 2013 and managed the boy group alone until 2019 when they launched their next group, TXT (Tomorrow By Together), six years after BTS. Big Hit Entertainment (now HYBE) then launched its first subsidiary label, Belift Labs, which facilitated the debut of Enhypen, a boy group that was formed via the Mnet survival show 'I-Land' as of 2020.


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HYBE plans to debut two more groups by 2022

In 2021, fans saw Big Hit Entertainment's transition to HYBE Labels, a multi-conglomerate agency that was merged with six other subsidiary South Korean labels namely - Big Hit Music (BTS and TXT), Belift Labs (Enhypen), Pledis Entertainment (Seventeen and fromis_9), Source Music (Le Sserafim), KOZ Entertainment (ZICO), ADOR (NewJeans), as well as two international labels - HYBE Japan and HYBE America.

Now as HYBE has announced the debut of six more K-pop groups, a lot of attention is being paid to the label's attempt at popularizing new groups when there already are many older groups from the second, third, and fourth generations of K-pop. It has been reported that in 2022 alone, after the epic popularity of Le Sserafim and NewJeans, HYBE will debut a new global boy group under HYBE Japan.

Whereas Big Hit Music will have a third group after BTS and TXT with members of the pre-debut team - Trainee A. This means that 2022 will have two more K-pop group debuts from HYBE making the label's active group tally to nine.

The K-pop label, HYBE announces a global audition with all seven of its subsidiaries taking part in the audition in April at Las Vegas  (@hybe.labels.audition/Instagram)
The K-pop label, HYBE held a global audition with all seven of its subsidiaries in April at Las Vegas (@hybe.labels.audition/Instagram)

Four new groups will debut under HYBE in 2023

The year 2023 is reported to be bigger for HYBE as reports state that the label is set to launch four more groups under its subsidiaries, with Pledis Entertainment debuting their first group after fromis_9 and their first ever boy group after Seventeen. Not only that but KOZ Entertainment's CEO and Soloist ZICO recently revealed that he plans to debut a new boy group under his label. Mnet has also announced a second season of survival show 'I-Land' that will take place in 2023, which means a new group will be debuting under HYBE from the show.

After that, HYBE, in collaboration with Universal Music, is also set to debut a new girl group by 2023. With four new groups in 2022 and four more new groups in 2023, HYBE is really solidifying its 'Top Label' status in the K-pop industry with the strategy of debuting one group each under different subsidiary labels.

Though BTS still awaits a decision regarding their mandatory enlistment, HYBE starts preparing to cut losses in advance with their Gaming Business (HYBE Labels)
Fans think BTS' popularity will help the upcoming groups under HYBE's subsidiary angencies (HYBE Labels)

'More groups means more $$$ in their pockets'

Fans have mixed reactions to the news of HYBE's mass production strategy, with one faction calling out the label for erasing older groups and the other excited for the new groups and hope they'll change the shape of K-pop internationally. One fan said, "Lmao kpoppies, you all are so funny, you didn't cared before but now you care about reputation? That is such a fake woke. 2nd clearly kpoppies has zero knowledge about the corporation named Hybe. Hybe is NOT A LABEL but a corporation."

One fan defended, "I don't understand why now people see hybe as one and only company when in reality it's composed by many other labels like bighit music, ador, source, pledis, belift that work in their own projects." Another fan supported, "As long as they produce quality talent and take good care of their employees (which also means not debuting children that shouldn't be taking on the mental, physical, and emotional strain of being an idol) then it's not a big deal I guess."

One fan critiqued, "Tbh companies need to stop makimg more grps im tired." Another responded, "More groups more $$$$ goes in their pockets." One more fan said, "God damn that’s hella groups what the hell is going on did I miss something this is my first time hearing about this." One fan explained, "Hybe is milking what they can have from company stans. No matter how many scandals will happen, no matter how much netizens would talk, at the end they have a fanbase who would buy albums and merch without even knowing groups because hybe produced them and hybe is bts's company." One more fan said, "First ask bh music to focus on txt promotions." Another responded, "Ik, I love the groups out of Hybe, but quantity doesn't necessarily mean quality."