The Heartbreaking Story Of BTS’s Suga — From Making $2 A Day To Being Worth Tens Of Millions

Suga’s humble roots will make you cry and inspire you at the same time.

With a net worth of over $10,000,000 and an impossibly fast rapping style, BTS‘s Suga continues to turn heads and drop jaws everywhere he performs. 

Who would have thought that less than a decade ago, this idol with a worldwide popularity had to choose between eating or riding a bus home? 

He made music by working part-time at a recording studio but earned nothing. 

Every day, he’d ask himself if he should eat a 1,000 won noodle so he could have money leftover to take the bus home.

Or should he treat himself to a 2,000-won noodle but have to walk home, taking two hours.

Suga used to be active as an underground rapper (and producer!) before he auditioned for a company that wasn’t part of the “big three” of the time — SM Entertainment, JYP Entertainment, and YG Entertainment.

Although he didn’t win, he still got 2nd place in the rap competition that this company, Big Hit Entertainment, hosted.

It looked like his career was finally starting to gain traction as he was signed to join the company as both a producer and a trainee.

But even when he was a trainee, he still worked a part-time job as a deliveryman to make ends meet. 

He got into an accident while making a delivery, injuring him.

I had the accident when I was delivering on a motorcycle. When I opened my eyes, I could see the wheels right in front of me. I got dragged into the wheels and couldn’t move because my shoulder was dislocated.

— Suga

After telling this story to his company, the Big Hit paid for Suga’s fees so he didn’t need to have a part-time job anymore.

Even though he was training for three years, he was originally supposed to be primarily a music producer. Good thing he was convinced into joining BTS eventually!

It was during these three years that he formed a strong bond with one of his co-trainees, J-Hope — he even mentioned that he chose to be with him because he motivates him. 

J-Hope is also very energetic. I don’t usually have a lot of energy but he always gives me energy.

— Suga

J-Hope shared the same praise for Suga.

He acts like he doesn’t care about the other members, but he actually takes care of them behind the scenes.

— J-Hope

Aside from experiencing poverty, Suga also suffered from the lack of support in his passion to pursue music. 

Because of this lack of support and also battling several mental health issues such as depression, OCD and sociophobia, Suga made it a point to raise awareness and educate people on mental issues that are plaguing today’s youth. 

Anxiety and loneliness seemed to be with me for life. I put a lot of effort on how I would work it out, but it seems like I have to study it for my entire life.

— Suga

Despite all the troubles he needed to overcome and face, Suga rose from the ashes as a stronger, braver and better person. 

When HYBE officially became listed on the Korean Stock Exchange, Bang Si Hyuk gifted him with 68,385 shares of the company, adding to his net worth. With a net worth of over $10 million USD, Suga is a philanthropist who has donated hundreds of millions of won to cancer foundations, disaster relief, and hospitals.

In 2014, he promised fans that he’d buy beef for his fans if he became successful. He fulfilled this promise four years later as he donated high-quality beef to 39 orphanages under the name “ARMY”. 

His close friend J-Hope also gives back to the community, having similarly donated hundreds of millions to support the needy.

Because of BTS’s passion for inspiring the youth, the whole group was awarded the fifth-class Hwagwan Order of Cultural Merit by the President of South Korea in October 2018. And they have become one of Korea’s most recognizable faces around the world.