SEOUL, June 16 (Yonhap) -- Bang Si-hyuk, head of BTS' management agency Big Hit Entertainment, was chosen by American music publication Billboard as one of the top leaders in the global independent record industry in 2020.
Bang, 47, was included on Billboard's "2020 Indie Power Players" list published on Monday (local time), compiled by staff at the U.S. music trade publication.
"Multi-platinum albums, a global stadium tour, an army of fans -- BTS has achieved it all with Bang's independent Big Hit Entertainment," Billboard evaluated.
Billboard also underscored the unprecedented feat achieved by Bang and the K-pop septet.
"The K-pop super group's 'Map of the Soul: 7' debuted atop the Billboard 200 in March, two months after BTS performed -- in Korean -- at the 62nd annual Grammy Awards," it said.
Bang was also quoted as saying, "We achieved such growth without relying on preexisting systems. Solely focusing on content and fans and our vision -- this is the 'independence' and driving force of Big Hit."
Other executives from the total 75 record labels mentioned included Patrick Amory, president of Matador Records; Scott Borchetta at Big Machine Label Group; Frabian Eli Carrión at Real Hasta La Muerte; and Alisa Coleman, COO of ABKCO Music & Records.
Founded by Bang, nicknamed Hitman, in 2005, Big Hit has grown into a global entertainment powerhouse thanks to the massive success of boy band BTS.
The company's operating profit for the fiscal year 2019 reached 98.7 billion won (US$80.5 million), bigger than the combined operating profit of the top three K-pop agencies -- SM Entertainment, JYP Entertainment and YG Entertainment.
The company plans to go public on South Korea's stock exchange within the year.