SM Entertainment has addressed reports of EXO’s Sehun and Chanyeol signing under a new agency in order to pursue solo activities.
Reports suggested that Sehun and Chanyeol are pursuing independent careers under a new agency
On 17th October, SBS Entertainment News released a report that according to some entertainment industry insiders, members of EXO, Sehun and Chanyeol have signed exclusive contracts with a new agency which has been founded by Jung Hoon Tak, the former CEO of the entertainment agency iHQ and also an advisor to the Korea Entertainment Management Association.
It stated that up until recently, both Sehun and Chanyeol had discussed the direction of their individual activities with SM Entertainment, and after long discussions, it was mutually agreed that the two members would move to a new company. Under this new agreement, Sehun and Chanyeol would still be able to carry out their group activities with EXO under SM Entertainment.
The report further stated that the EXO members have reached an agreement with SM Entertainment to pursue individual endeavours by signing with the new company. They will continue to maintain their involvement in EXO’s group activities under SM.
SM Entertainment’s response to the reports
In response to the SBS Entertainment News report, SM Entertainment has issued a statement in order to debunk the rumours. The company refuted the rumours and stated that it is not true that the members, Chanyeol and Sehun have moved to a new agency. The contracts signed by EXO members with SM Entertainment at the end of last year continue to remain valid, and EXO activities will continue to proceed under SM Entertainment.
The Entertainment company further clarified that in regards to the members’ individual endeavours, they have conditionally allowed them to proceed through their own established companies if they wish to do so, given that they proceed within the bounds of terms of their existing exclusive contracts with the company.
Both the idols are yet to release a statement regarding the same.
Netizens’ Reactions to the SBS Entertainment Report
After the report was released, netizens showed their support for it. They compared the situation to that of Girls’ Generation when many of the group’s members left the company in order to pursue solo activities, but still came under SM Entertainment for group activities as they released their much anticipated comeback “Forever 1”. This is certainly a common step for many established groups with years of experience under their belt. After all, as many netizens commented, solo activities are the next logical step for an artist in South Korea, as they wish to go beyond their idol days.
Previous controversy surrounding SM and EXO
Earlier this year, EXO members Chen, Baekhyun, and Xiumin landed in a legal battle against their agency. They filed a joint lawsuit where they were seeking the termination of their contracts. While both the parties accused each other of several things, SM Entertainment and EXO’s Chen, Baekhyun and Xiumin, eventually resolved their dispute.