Singer Lee Seung-gi notified Hook Entertainment that their exclusive contract has been terminated, after the agency admitted that it failed to pay the singer his earnings adequately, local news outlets reported on Thursday.
Last month, the singer demanded that his agency Hook Entertainment fully disclose his payment records. Lee has been a popular singer since his debut in 2004 and released a total of 137 songs over the past 18 years, but he claims he has not received any payment for the digital streams or downloads of his songs.
In the official legal documents sent to Hook last month, Lee demanded Hook disclose financial records regarding his cut for 27 albums and 137 songs.
Hook Entertainment initially denied allegations that it withheld payment to Lee, but according to industry insiders, the agency sent a response to Lee’s document, admitting that Lee had not been properly paid for his songs being streamed. In response, Lee declared that their exclusive contract has been nullified on grounds that Hook violated their terms and conditions.
Hook Entertainment’s CEO Kwon Jin-young is currently facing accusations of embezzlement and misuse of the company credit card. Kwon issued an official statement on Wednesday, which did not address the embezzlement allegations.
“I will be fully responsible for the dispute regarding Lee Seung-gi,” she wrote. “I will not avoid the responsibilities and use my personal funds to resolve the issue.”
The agency is currently under police investigation and was subject to a search and seizure on Nov. 10. The charges have not yet been made public.
BY HALEY YANG [firstname.lastname@example.org]