HYBE vs ADOR’s Min Hee-Jin: What we know so far

As the conflict between ADOR the management company behind NEWJEANS and HYBE reaches a fever pitch … Let’s take a look at what we know so far:

On the 3rd of April, ADOR, the agency for NEWJEANS, fired off complaint emails to its parent company HYBE. This happened after HYBE’s other label, BELIFT LAB, debuted their new girl group ILLIT on the 25th of March.

ADOR’s vice president, Shin Dong-Hoon, demanded a swift response from HYBE’s CEO, Park Ji-Won, and BELIFT LAB’s CEO, Kim Tae-Ho. The complaints alleged plagiarism of choreography and imitation of concepts, done without ADOR’s consent.

ADOR CEO, Min Hee-Jin has also taken a bold step by sending complaint emails directly to HYBE’s top executives. This included Chairman Bang Si-Hyuk and President Scooter Braun of HYBE America.

Min criticized HYBE for what she perceives as blatant disregard for the company’s anti-plagiarism stances.

Audit and Allegations

HYBE’s concerns about a potential takeover attempt center around Min’s actions and the role of an executive, known as A, who has transferred from HYBE to ADOR.

Suspected of leaking sensitive financial information during the transition … This executive’s actions are under scrutiny as part of an audit that is examining both internal and external sources.

CEO Park stated that if the audit substantiates the findings … HYBE will take decisive actions against those undermining the company’s governance.

HYBE CEO Calls for Continued Focus on NEWJEANS’ Activities

NewJeans’ Dorm Revealed in New Photos

A day after initiating an audit and demanding Min’s resignation … HYBE CEO Park Ji-Won urged ADOR members to focus on NEWJEANS’ upcoming activities.

Despite the heightened anxiety surrounding the corporate tensions, Park has directed the team to concentrate on NEWJEANS’ scheduled comeback and fan engagements, including a new single release on May 24 and a large-scale fan meeting in Tokyo.

Potential Power Shifts in ADOR

With an 18% stake in ADOR, making her the second-largest shareholder, Min Hee-Jin has shown her influence within the company. Despite owning less than HYBE’s 80% stake, she has used her position to challenge the management’s decisions.

Recent reports suggest Min might be strategizing to dilute HYBE’s shareholding through a third-party allotment, potentially selling management shares to a private equity fund aligned with her interests.

The Fallout from HYBE’s Independent Label Model

The controversy surrounding Min Hee-jin and HYBE unveils the limitations of HYBE’s independent label model. This model, once praised during NEWJEANS’ success, is now under scrutiny as the governance structure faces significant challenges.

This situation has brought HYBE’s multi-label system under the spotlight, a strategy that involves managing several independent labels to diversify talent and reduce dependency on any single group or artist.

While this model has been successful, the current dispute illustrates some of the inherent challenges, including potential conflicts between label schedules and management approaches.

HYBE CEO Park acknowledges these challenges and asserts that HYBE will continue to refine its strategy to ensure the growth and success of its artists, including NEWJEANS and ILLIT.

Is a Messy Divorce on the horizon?

As the allegations and audit processes unfold, HYBE and Min Hee-Jin are preparing for possible legal disputes, highlighting ongoing tensions that could influence the future dynamics within the K-pop industry.

The dispute has also affected HYBE’s market capitalization, which dropped by 850 billion won in just two days, underscoring the potential long-term impact on HYBE’s business model and its relationship with subsidiary labels.

Fan concern remains high about the impact of the controversy on the young members of NEWJEANS and ILLIT.

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