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ADOR CEO Min Hee Jin And HYBE Feud

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Updated Apr 24, 2024 at 01:01PM EDT by Zach.

Added Apr 23, 2024 at 06:50PM EDT by Mateus.

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Overview

ADOR CEO Min Hee Jin And HYBE Feud, also known as ADOR Vs. HYBE Fallout, refers to allegations of power struggles, corporate espionage, plagiarism and leaked information between HYBE, a South Korean multinational entertainment company responsible for K-pop groups (most notably BTS) and ADOR (an independent label under HYBE responsible for the K-pop girl group NewJeans). The feud erupted in late April 2024, as documents about HYBE's audit revealed an alleged coup orchestrated by ADOR CEO Min Hee Jin, who claims her company was being exploited and accused HYBE of allowing its subsidiary, BELIFT Lab, to plagiarize NewJeans' concept for their new girl group, ILLIT.

Background

On April 22nd, 2024, the South Korean news outlet Dispatch exclusively revealed that ADOR‘s CEO Min Hee Jin wanted to break away from HYBE, alleging she "has secretly approached investors and looked for a way to buy HYBE’s shares in ADOR." The article also claims the CEO "wrongfully obtained sensitive internal information about HYBE" and that HYBE was able to obtain information and evidence that she has also abused employees.[1][2]

Also on April 22nd, YouTuber[3] @moluccensis posted an essay video explaining the ongoing feud between ADOR and HYBE (shown below), which amassed over 54,000 views and 2,100 likes in a day.



Developments

April 2024 HYBE Audit Against ADOR

On April 22nd, 2024, several South Korean news outlets reported that HYBE invoked an audit against ADOR CEO and asked Min Hee Jin to resign after Dispatch revealed her reported "coup" attempt. According to the news outlet Pinkvilla,[4] the audit alleges ADOR leaked sensitive information, including "contract details between ADOR and HYBE" and that CEO Min Hee Jin and her team "clandestinely attempted to tarnish the reputation of HYBE and its artists by manipulating public opinion negatively."

ADOR CEO Min Hee Jin Accused HYBE of Plagiarism

In response to HYBE's audit, ADOR CEO Hee Jin released a statement highlighting BELIFT LAB’s, a rival K-pop label, rookie group ILLIT’s alleged plagiarism of NewJeans as a central concern. In her statement, she also claims that HYBE chairman Bang Si-hyuk produced ILLIT’s debut album, saying, "The copying of NewJeans by ILLIT was not done independently by BELIFT LAB but also involves HYBE."

On April 22nd, 2024, X[5] user @nwjnsbts posted a translated version of the statement (shown below), which amassed more than 910 likes and 270 retweets in a day.


Hello. This is ADOR Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as ' Ador', CEO Min Hee-jin). In order to protect its artist, New Jeans, and for the healthy development of our country's music industry and culture, ADOR is making a public statement regarding 'I'LLIT NewJeans copy incident'. Hybe operates a multi-label system so that several labels can independently create their own music and pursue cultural diversity through this. ADOR is one of those labels. However, ironically, the cultural achievements achieved by Adore and its artist New Jeans are being most seriously violated by Hive. Belif Lab, one of Hive's labels, debuted the 5- member female idol group Aillet in March of this year. After Aillet's teaser photo was released, reactions such as I thought it was New Jeans 'flooded the online world. Aillet supports New Jeans in all areas of entertainment activities, including hair, makeup, costumes, choreography, photography, video, and event appearances .Copying. Eyelets are evaluated as ' Min Hee-jin style', 'Min Hee-jin style', and ' New Jeans imitation'. This is truly shameful. Hive's Chairman Bang Si-hyuk produced Aillet 's debut album. Eyelet's copy of New Jeans was not done by the label Belif Lab alone, but Hive was also involved. Hive, which is said to be a leading K-POP company, is blinded by short-term profits and copies successful cultural content without any hesitation, producing banality rather than showing something new. New Jeans is currently preparing for a comeback in May. However, Aylit summoned New Jeans, who was not active. The appearance of an imitation damaged New Jeans' image, and it became the subject of unnecessary controversy, causing concern and fatigue to fans and the public. The culprits who created this situation are Hive and Belif Lab, but the damage caused by it is entirely the responsibility of Adore and New Genes. There is a response that it is understandable that Eyelet is similar to New Jeans since they are labels under Hive. Some even say that Adore and Newgenes would have allowed or understood this similarity. However, these reactions are clearly a misunderstanding, and we would like to correct this. Multi-label is a system that allows each label to independently produce the music it wants, but is not a system that gives impunity to other labels from imitating the cultural achievements of one label just because it is an affiliated label. Absolutely not. And Adore has never permitted or consented to copying New Genes' achievements to anyone, including Hive and Belif Lab. Adore does not want New Jeans and Eyelet to be associated in any way. Just because we debuted under Hive 's label, we have no intention of tolerating any promotion that claims we are someone's younger group.

Adore has already raised an official issue with Hive and Belif Lab regarding not only this copying incident but also a series of actions taken by Hive toward Newgenes, including this. However, Hive and Belif Lab did not admit their mistake, but were busy making excuses, and was taking time by delaying providing a specific response. Meanwhile, Hive suddenly notified today (April 22, 2024) that it would take steps to suspend and dismiss Min Hee-jin as CEO, citing concerns that CEO Min Hee-jin would significantly damage Adore 's corporate value. They say 'there is '. At the same time, the media is trying to play with ridiculous content, such as saying that CEO Min Hee-jin' attempted to seize management rights. ' How can a legitimate protest to protect the cultural achievements of its artist, New Genes, harm Adore 's interests? How can it become an act of usurping Adore's management rights ? It is something that cannot be understood through common sense. There appears to be intent. Hive, Belif Lab, and Chairman Bang Si-hyuk are While not making a proper apology or preparing a solution for the situation, they seem to think that it will end once CEO Min Hee-jin is kicked out of the company. Adore will protect the cultural achievements that New Jeans has achieved and will use all possible means and methods to prevent further infringement due to copying. Adore would like to make it clear that it cannot afford to sit idly by and watch the various unfair practices that continue against Adore and New Genes, including copying. As Aillet's activities increase, Hive and Belif Lab may try to dilute the situation at the time of debut by highlighting only the differences with New Jeans. As time passes, misunderstandings among fans and the public are likely to increase. Accordingly, Adore announced its official position after sufficient discussion with NewJeans members and legal representatives. We hope that with this announcement, Hive and Belif Lab will be able to face their mistakes and, in the future, respect the cultural achievements of others and contribute to our country's music industry and culture through creation that has gone through intense consideration. thank you


Online Reactions

Amid the feud between ADOR and HYBE, K-pop fans used humor to comment on the situation. For example, on April 23rd, 2024, X[6] user @its_min22 posted a scene from Disney Channel's Hanna Montana show in which she is accepting an award while a fight is happening in the background (shown below) paired with the caption "NewJeans going to events while Ador and Hybe are fighting." The post amassed more than 33,000 views and 1,600 likes in a few hours.


TikTokers also commented about the K-pop drama, as user @priscillakwon[7] posted a video on April 22nd explaining CEO Min Hee Jin vs. HYBE feud (shown below, left), which received roughly 1.2 million plays and 110,000 likes in one day.

On the same day, TikTok[8] user @zuha_clips posted a video of a girl from the K-pop group Le Sserafim walking inside HYBE's building whiteout "knowing what's going on." The post (shown below, right) garnered more than 137,000 plays and 27,000 likes in a day.

@priscillakwon Does NEWJEANS need Min Heejin..? #minheejin #hybe #ador #newjeans #yesstyle #bangsihyuk ♬ original sound – priscilla kwon

@zuha_clips hybe working overtimeee rn😭 #lesserafim #minheejin #hybe #illit #newjeans ♬ original sound – zuhaclips

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