Yang Hyun Suk has officially stepped down as the CEO of YG Entertainment amid the drug scandal involving the leader of boy band iKON, Kim Hanbin. Yang Hyun Suk founded the agency in 1996, and it became apart of what is known as the “Big Three” entertainment agencies in South Korea, alongside SM Entertainment and JYP Entertainment. Although he has resigned as CEO, he still owns the largest share of YG Entertainment, meaning his influence will not waiver from the title change. His resignation follows a string of scandals that began with the youngest member of his biggest boy band Seungri being accused of throwing massive parties for his investors that included drugs, prostitution, and more. His case is still ongoing, but a new scandal has arose involving the leader of younger boy band iKON. Kim Hanbin was accused of attempting to by Marijuana and LSD back in 2016, however there was no further prosecution after police reports were filed. The agency also has no records of any iKON members failing drugs tests at anytime. Hanbin chose to immediately terminate his contract and leave the group and agency when the news broke to lessen the damage to his group and other members.
Fans across the world were stunned by the news of his departure. Some called for the resignation of YG himself, which they achieved, while some started a petition to get Hanbin back into the group. As of now, the petition has over 700,000 signatures, and it is easy to see why fans are so adamant to get Hanbin back. He essentially did nothing wrong: he accompanied a friend to a drug deal back in 2016, never purchased the drugs, never took any drugs according to YG Entertainment official records, and police never prosecuted him back in 2016. Of course there may be more information that has yet to be released, but as of now Hanbin has been removed from all YG Entertainment records, and he has not commented on returning.
Claire Coburn is an Intern Writer for Pub Sports Radio, and Valamayo Social & Digital Marketing.