K-Pop
Bang Si-hyuk, founder of K-pop management agency Big Hit Entertainment who manage K-pop sensation BTS, speaks during the company's initial public offering ceremony at the Korea Exchange in Seoul on October 15, 2020. (Photo by SeongJoon Cho / POOL / AFP) (Photo by SEONGJOON CHO/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

ARMYs Are So Emotional After Bang PD Stepped Down As HYBE's CEO

He'll focus on his passion — production — moving forward.

SEONGJOON CHO/AFP/Getty Images

On Thursday, July 1, HYBE Labels announced Bang Si Hyuk, who’s referred to by fans as “Bang PD,” is officially stepping down as CEO of the company. He founded the company, formerly known as Big Hit Entertainment, in 2005, and has since helped launch the careers of several K-pop acts like BTS, TXT, ENHYPEN, and more. Although he’ll remain on the Board of Directors as Chairman and will continue producing behind the scenes, these tweets about Bang BD resigning as HYBE's CEO show fans are still feeling emotional.

The news is a result of HYBE undergoing organizational restructuring. As part of the changes, Park Ji Won, who was the company’s former HQ CEO, will become the new CEO of HYBE. He’ll handle the label’s management strategy and overall operations. Moving forward, HYBE's American division will be managed jointly by Lenzo Yoon, aka Yoon Seok Jun, and Ithaca Holdings' founder Scooter Braun. HYBE America will also be handling HYBE’s audition program from now on.

According to the Korean media outlet Star Daily News, its leadership changes are part of the company’s mid to long-term business strategy to better facilitate global management. The news comes three months after HYBE reportedly acquired Ithaca Holdings, the company led by SB Projects founder Scooter Braun, for $1 billion. BTS, Demi Lovato, Justin Bieber, and more artists from the companies shared the announcement in an April 5 YouTube video.

Out of all its changes, fans are the most surprised over Bang PD stepping down as CEO. Since he’s supported their favorite K-pop stars from the beginning, fans are feeling bittersweet over him not being the CEO anymore. But they’re also thrilled he’ll be able to focus on production behind the scenes more. That is how it all started, after all. Take a look at ARMYs’ reactions to the news below.

Big changes are definitely coming, but the good news is Bang PD isn’t leaving the HYBE family. He’ll focus even more on music now, so you know what that means ARMYs: More bops are sure to come from all your favorite artists!