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KDB realizes revenues on investment in BTS agency, film ‘Parasite’

A movie poster for “Parasite” (CJ Entertainment)
A movie poster for “Parasite” (CJ Entertainment)

South Korean state-owned lender the Korea Development Bank has borne fruit with its investment in the nation’s cultural contents, officials said Friday.

Already generating profits from its investment in Big Hit Entertainment, the agency of global K-pop sensation BTS, the banking group is also expecting considerable returns from its investment in Oscar-winning film “Parasite.”

KDB Capital, an affiliate of KDB, invested nearly 700 million won ($591,000), including a direct investment worth 150 million won in the production and promotion of “Parasite” -- which won four Oscars at the 92nd Academy Awards earlier this week.

In partnership with Cape Investment & Securities, the KDB-affiliated credit finance company previously launched Cape FN Cinema-index Fund No. 1 to actively foster local movie industry. Among 1.74 billion won of total investment, KDB Capital injected 520 million won.

“As a policy finance institution, we have invested not only in traditional sectors but also in film production through our affiliate companies. In addition to promoting the country’s cultural contents industry, we’ve also made gains on investments,” an official of KDB said.

Since 2010, KDB has enforced investment worth 53 billion won in the local movie industry through its affiliated companies such as KDB Capital and has steadily expanded the range of investments from film production to music, media, games, dramas and webtoons. 


K-pop band BTS (Big Hit Entertainment)
K-pop band BTS (Big Hit Entertainment)

A landmark success case was its choice to invest some 12 billion won in the K-pop boy group BTS and its agency Big Hit. That investment reached 75.1 billion won as of November, a return on investment of about 530 percent for KDB Capital.

Besides investing in BTS, KDB has been leading the nation’s cultural contents’ innovation and growth by launching other funds worth nearly 500 billion won.

“The success of the movie ‘Parasite’ has once again confirmed the global competitiveness of Hallyu (Korean Wave) content,” the company said.

“We will continue to make investments not just in local manufacturing firms and unicorns, but in the cultural content industry as well, aiming to lead the nation’s growth in innovation.”

By Jie Ye-eun (yeeun@heraldcorp.com)
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