Dispatch unveils circumstantial evidence to how Min Hee-jin allegedly benefited from NewJeans' global fame and HYBE's system

Dispatch unveils circumstantial evidence to how Min Hee-jin allegedly benefited from NewJeans
Dispatch unveils circumstantial evidence to how Min Hee-jin allegedly benefited from NewJeans' global fame and HYBE's system (Image via NewJeans and minheejin/Instagram)

On April 24, 2024, the South Korean media outlet, Dispatch, reported circumstantial evidence to showcase how Min Hee-jin allegedly benefitted from NewJeans' global fame and HYBE's system. The outlet stated that ADOR's CEO, Min Hee-jin, should not be solely credited for the rookie girl group's success and revealed that if the group had failed to gain popularity, HYBE would have had to bear all the loss.

According to reports, HYBE recently requested an audit of its subsidiary ADOR and its CEO, Min Hee-jin, due to allegations that the subsidiary tried to get independent management powers and disclose confidential information, including financial accounts, to third parties. The company has sent a letter to the ADOR convening a meeting and demanding that Min Hee-jin step down from the CEO's position.

Min Hee-jin allegedly did not pay 45% tax, as she received stock from the loss-incurring subsidiary

Dispatch revealed following the NewJeans' success, Min Hee-jin was allowed to purchase ADOR stock at low prices in the first half of 2023 and eventually benefitted from it because she avoided paying 45% tax on it, as the subsidiary was already at a loss.

Minji was the first member of the group to join Source Music in 2017, followed by Hanni in 2019, who participated in Big Hit and Source Music's joint global audition. In the following year, Danielle and Haerin joined as trainees while the media outlet revealed Hyein's admission date. The five members were selected by CEO So Seong-jin and received training under them until the second half of 2021.

Meanwhile, Min Hee-jin, who joined HYBE in 2019, wanted to create her label and was given the responsibility of preparing for the debut group of Source Music. As she wanted to be in charge of her own label, ADOR was established.

She took the trainees including, Minji, Hanni, Haerin, Danielle, and Hyein from Source Music into her agency, ADOR. In return, she provided Source Music with the cost of the trainees who were at Source Music till the second half of 2021.

Dispatch cited that while Min Hee-jin provided much-needed fame to NewJeans, it was So Seong-jin who selected the trainees from Source Music. Thus, she could not be given complete credit for the quick success of NewJeans, and many other people like So Seong-jin should be cited as well.

They stated that the ADOR's CEO succeeded in making 2000s music in a modern manner with the help of producer Lee Oh-hong. However, she was rewarded for her work from HYBE.

The HYBE's board of directors allowed her to purchase ADOR's old stock at a low price and avoid purchasing stock purchasing options. The compensation was offered in the first quarter of 2023.

Subsequently, Min Hee-jin allegedly took advantage of HYBE's offer and secured 573,160 shares in the subsidiary, resulting in an overall 18% stake and emerging as the second-largest shareholder. The circumstances seemed to be in her favor when she received the ADOR's stock. The subsidiary was an unlisted and loss-making company.

According to Dispatch, ADOR's sales and operating loss were 18.6 billion won and 4 billion won, respectively. However, if she had received stock options from HYBE, she would have to pay the 45% tax. She also has the put option, also known as the right to sell, in which she can re-sell her stock at a specific price before the expiration of the contract.

Min Hee-jin has declined the accusations that she tried to secure independent management rights for ADOR while HYBE is currently investigating the ongoing matter.

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