2NE1 disbands, and Winner member leaves group

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2NE1 disbands, and Winner member leaves group

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Nam Tae-hyun, left, of K-pop boy group Winner will leave the group for health reasons, while girl group 2NE1 has decided to officially disband so that members can focus on their solo acts. [JOONGANG ILBO]

Iconic girl group 2NE1 has officially disbanded following months of discussions after the members’ exclusive management contracts with their agency expired in May.

YG Entertainment said it had a long discussion with other members of the group after one of their singers, Gong Min-ji, left the agency in April, and both parties came to the conclusion that it was time to move on. “Since 2NE1 has been the girl group that has represented YG for the past seven years, we are very regretful and sad,” the agency said in a media release announcing the breakup on Friday. “However, we decided that it was [difficult] for the group to continue its run, so we decided it would be better to focus on the members’ solo acts.”

Two of the four members, CL and Sandara Park, have signed a new contract with YG Entertainment, while Park Bom will no longer be managed by the agency.

In the same release on Friday, YG Entertainment also announced changes to one of its boy groups. Nam Tae-hyun will be departing from Winner, and the originally five-man group will perform with the remaining four members without adding a new one.

The group hasn’t made appearances in the past few months since Nam was struggling with psychological health issues, the agency said. “But since the problems have been chronic since he was young, it became difficult to see when he could recover and come back, so after talking to Nam, we decided to cancel the exclusive management contract with Nam.”

YG Entertainment added that the departure was hard on Nam because he did not want to impose any burden on the rest of the group since it is relatively young. Winner originally debuted in 2014.

BY LEE SUN-MIN
[summerlee@joongang.co.kr]

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