While it’s well known that One Direction and 5 Seconds Of Summer share ties, supporting each other, embarking on arena tours together, and sharing a management company, a new report indicates that the two groups’ relations run deeper and that 1D in fact hold a financial stake in the Sydney rockers.
According to a Billboard investigation, several sources have confirmed the claim. An August report by a UK paper indicated that the five members of 1D own a share of the London-based company 5SOS LLP. Billboard have since confirmed that the registered partners listed for the company are the members of 5SOS and One Mode Productions, whose directors include the members of 1D and their management.
According to documents filed at London’s Companies House, the UK’s registrar of companies, 5SOS LLP’s stake in the pop rock four-piece amounts to 120 shares. 50 percent of those shares are held by the members of 1D, with Modest Management’s Richard Griffiths and Will Bloomfield holding the other 50.
What does this mean for the boy band’s finances? Looking at 5SOS’ current music scales, which comprises 788,000 albums and EPs and 2.4 million song downloads sold, 1D and Modest have netted $250,000 from their investment, with returns far greater when you account for merchandise sales.
According to Mikael Åkerfeldt, frontman of Swedish metal outfit Opeth, the tour was another avenue to help 1D reap profit from their investment. Speaking to Music Feeds in August, Åkerfeldt described the “aggressive” marketing campaign surrounding 5SOS when he attended a 1D show with his daughter.
“It was the most aggressive commercial campaign… that I have ever seen,” said Åkerfeldt. “They have the big screens on the side of the stage and every two minutes there was an ad for their new record and then the third minute there was a video for one of the songs and then another ad and then another video.”
“It was like super aggressive,” he added. “They were just directing this band towards this massive crowd of 60,000 young girls like, ‘Okay, you’re gonna like this band now.’ They were compelling the crowd to like this band. And at 7:30, [5 Seconds of Summer] was on stage and the crowd were fans of them.”
“The thinking is, ‘The bigger these guys get, the more money we make,’” one insider privy to the arrangement between the two high-selling groups told Billboard. “They’re going to put someone on as the opening act on the tour anyway, why not put somebody that they have a financial interest in?”
While Modest Management chiefs Griffiths and Harry Magee declined to comment on Billboard‘s findings, during a March interview with the industry bible, Magee credited 1D as “early adopters of 5 Seconds of Summer”, saying members Niall Horan and Louis Tomlinson introduced the rest of the band to the group.