In the past few years, K-pop has exploded all over the world. It’s given us music, it’s given us K-pop idols, and it’s given us some extremely wealthy young men and women. But who among them is the richest? And how high up the rich list do the members of BTS rank? Surprisingly, not high enough to feature on our round-up of the 10 Richest K-Pop Idols in the World Today.
10. Lee Ji Eun – Net Worth: $15 Million
Lee Ji Eun (aka UI) has been active in the K-pop scene since 2008. As well as earning the title “Nation’s Little Sister” in her native Korea thanks to her cute style, she’s also managed to win a heap of awards and sell an even bigger heap of records… something that no doubt explains her estimated $15 million net worth.
9. Gina Choi – Net Worth: $16 Million
Gina Choi may not have been born in South Korea, but that hasn’t stopped her achieving huge success (and wealth) as a K-pop idol. The singer was born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada in September 1987. 33 years later, she’s sat on the giant fortune of $16 million. How did she do it? Selling a massive number of albums to start. Peaking at number one in Korea with her single “Black & White” hasn’t exactly harmed matters either.
8. Sandara Park – Net Worth: $16 Million
Gina Choi isn’t the only K-pop idol with a $16 million net worth. According to celebsmoney.com, Sandara Park has the exact same fortune. Having earned fame and fortune as a member of the now-defunct girl group 2NE1, Park has subsequently gone on to carve out a successful career as a solo artist. Her talents have also won her a judging spot on Pinoy Boyband Superstar.
7. Lee Hyori – Net Worth: $18 Million
Lee Hyori began her career as the lead singer of pop girl group Fin.K.L. After achieving huge success with the group, Hyori went her own way with the release of her debut album, Stylish, in 2003. Her success as a solo artist has been just as significant as her success as a band member, with her first four solo albums all climbing to the top spot on the Korean charts. According to the latest estimates, she’s now worth the grand sum of $18 million.
6. Choi Siwon – Net Worth: $18 Million
Question: which South Korean singer, songwriter, model, and actor is worth the grand sum of $18 million? If you answered Choi Siwon, give yourself a pat on the back. As a member of both Super Junior and the subgroup Super Junior-M, he’s enjoyed more number-one albums than most of us have had hot dinners, with Don’t Don (2007), Sorry, Sorry (2009), Bonamana (2010), Mr. Simple (2011), Sexy, Free & Single (2012), Mamacita (2014), and Play (2017) all reaching the coveted top spot in South Korea. Little wonder he’s one of K-pop’s biggest (and richest) stars.
5. Jung Ji Hoon – Net Worth: $20 million
Whether you know him by his birth name of Jung Ji Hoon or his stage name of Rain, there’s one thing we all know for certain – this hugely successful singer-songwriter is one of South Korea’s most popular stars…. and one of its richest. Thanks to the success of his 5 huge selling albums, his three world tours, and his forays into acting, he now boasts the impressive net worth of $20 million.
4. Dong Young-bae – Net Worth: $20 Million
Dong Young-bae (aka Taeyang) is currently sat on the grand net worth of $20 million. As a founding member of the K-pop boy band Big Bang, he’s enjoyed huge success across both Korea and Japan. He’s not fared too badly as a solo artist either, scoring a number one spot in Korea with his second album, a number one spot on the US Heatseekers and US World charts and a number two spot in Japan.
3. Kwon Ji-Yong – Net Worth: $30 million
Kwon Ji-Yong (or G-Dragon, as he’s known to his fans) is one very wealthy man indeed. As a member of the band Big Bang, he’s amassed a legion of fans and the kind of wealth few of us could even dream of. But it’s not just his music that’s bought in the millions. According to celebritynetworth.com, the singer (who also dabbles in fashion design in his spare time), manages to make a whopping $2-3 million per endorsement deal, making him one of the highest-paid celebrity endorsers in South Korea and proud owner of a $30 million net worth.
2. PSY – Net Worth: $60 Million
Who can forget that catchy single “Gangnam Style”, not to mention its epic music video? The man who gave the world both (along with a brand-new style of dance to boot) comes in next on our list. PSY broke onto the music scene in 2001 with his first album “PSY… From the Psycho World”. The album didn’t do much beyond earning its maker a fine from the South Korean authorities for explicit content. The 2nd album fared similarly. Success finally came a-knocking with PSY’s third album, but it wasn’t until his sixth album that he hit the big time. When its lead single Gangham Style hit YouTube, the world and its wife went crazy for PSY and his particular brand of K-pop. According to celebritynetworth.com, the video has now amassed a massive 3.5 billion views on YouTube… and helped Psy nicely along to a $60 million net worth.
1. Kim Jaejoong – Net Worth: $80 Million
Back in June, Seoulz.com took a deep dive into the salaries, endorsements, investments (businesses/real estate), assets, and influence of various K-pop idols. What did they find? That out of all the idols reviewed, Kim Jaejoong ranked as the richest. And little wonder. This is not a man that believes in taking it easy. As a singer, songwriter, actor, director, fashion designer, entrepreneur, former member of K-pop group JYJ and TVXQ, this 34-year-old has more strings to his bow than a fleet of archers. The end result of all his endeavors? A net worth estimated to be in the region of $80 Million.