Seungri recently appeared on an episode of My Little Old Boy and revealed how big his business had really grown.
As Lee Sang Min and Seungri were enjoying a bowl of ramen in Tokyo, Japan, the two entrepreneurs spoke business.
“You have 45 stores in Korea. Let’s see…if you have 45 stores…you have to be earning at least 18 billion won ($16 million USD) in sales per year. Does it reach that?” ㅡ Lee Sang Min
Seungri reacted with a coy smile and then reiterated that he had 45 stores.
“I said I have 45 stores…” ㅡ Seungri
The two stared at each other as if they were confused and Seungri finally blurted out that each of his ramen restaurants makes 200 million won ($180,000 USD) per month.
“If you make 50 million won ($45,000 USD) per month at each restaurant, that’s about 2 billion won ($1.8 million USD)…” ㅡ Lee Sang Min
“Each restaurant makes 200 million won ($180,000 USD) per month.” ㅡ Seungri
The expression on Lee Sang Min’s face said it all.
“Wow…you really succeeded, didn’t you? So that must mean you have billions of annual sales!” ㅡ Lee Sang Min
Based on Seungri’s numbers, Lee Sang Min is completely correct—at ₩200 million KRW per store, per month, Aori Ramen does a total of around ₩108 billion KRW (approx. $96 million USD) in annual sales.
The reaction from netizens, however, wasn’t as great as Lee Sang Min’s. Many netizens simply didn’t believe what Seungri said about his sales.
- “Look at him lie to increase the number of branches. 200 million won per month is ridiculous. The ratings weren’t even that good. I think it’ll disappear real quick.”
- “Seungtsby, don’t lie. 200 million won per month with ramen? 6 million won in sales per day? That’s probably only for a few of the 45 stores.”
- “What a load of bull. It could be considered fraud if his lie goes out on television like that. Let’s not go too far, Seungri~”
- “Does he want to get sued or what. Stop lying…”
- “Lies lies lies.”
- “Lie. Lies made to increase the number of branches~ If you try it once, you won’t go again.”
One netizen went ahead and made some calculations to show that it is highly unlikely that each store could sell so many bowls of ramen.
- “That means they make 7 million won daily. If a bowl of ramen is around 10,000 won, that means they’d have to sell 700 bowls…Let’s say they’re open for 12 hours. That means they’d have to sell 60 bowls per hour…meaning 1 bowl per minute. So he’s saying they sell a bowl of ramen each minute for 12 hours a day for 365 days a year?”
Others were simply very critical about the way Seungri talked about his restaurants on the program.
- “It looks like they’re about to close down since he’s blatantly advertising it now.”
- “If you fail after saying stuff like that, it’ll be hard to get back up. Let’s be humble. If you bluff too much, that’ll be the end.”
- “He said 200 million himself. Let’s make sure the tax office checks how much tax he reports.”
- “Seungri, how could you stare at your big senior like that. Regardless of junior/senior etiquette, have some respect for your elders.”
- “People who do franchises will probably know right away that it’s a lie.”
Of course, there were many that supported Seungri’s statement as well.
- “I think 200 million is easily possible. Probably not all the stores, but the ones at the good locations could probably even make 300 million. A celebrity owns it, it’s been on television, turnover ratio is good and his fans probably visit there too. There are many stores even in rural areas that make 100 million per month. The important thing is how much is left after deducting the cost of labor, ingredients and rent.”
- “Have you guys never worked at a restaurant before? With a good location + celebrity advertisement + SNS word of mouth + domestic/international BIGBANG fan power, I think they’ll easily surpass 200 million per month. Probably not all the stores, but places like Hongdae or Gyeongridan-gil that have good locations.”