The Korea Herald


Hybe turns in list of candidates for SM's board of executives

By Hong Yoo

Published : Feb. 16, 2023 - 13:30

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Hybe headquarters (Hybe) Hybe headquarters (Hybe)

Hybe, now the largest shareholder of SM Entertainment, turned in its list of candidates for SM’s board of executives on Thursday.

The list includes President of Hybe America Lee Jae-sang, Hybe Chief Legal Officer Jung Jin-soo and Hybe's chief of management and planning, Lee Jin-hwa, for the position of inside director.

“These candidates have built multifaceted experience in the fields of law, finance and establishing business strategies for a global company that endorses entertainment, IT and content sectors,” Hybe said in their introduction.

Other candidates not from Hybe that the K-pop powerhouse has recommended as outside directors include the senior staff attorney of GAON Law Group Kang Nam-kyu, professor of public administration at Yonsei University Hong Soon-man and the South Korean representative of the United Nations Environment Program Finance Initiative, Lim Dae-woong. Kang is a legal expert, Hong is a renowned figure in social sciences and Lim is an environmental, social and corporate governance expert.

Park Byung-moo, CEO of VIG Partners, has been suggested for a nonexecutive director position, while Choi Kyu-dam has been suggested as a nonexecutive auditor position.

It is yet to be verified whom Hybe has suggested for the CEO position or as the chairman of the board of executives.

The list was submitted by the founder and former producer of SM, Lee Soo-man, as Hybe cannot take part in the general meeting of stockholders scheduled next month.

Hybe did not include its producers such as Min Hee-jin, who launched K-pop girl group NewJeans, in the list as it had previously stated that it would help SM maintain its musical quality and identity.

“We did not recommend any for the executive position in the creative sector. We respect SM’s unique color and we are willing to continuously develop that color and help SM nurture future global creative talents,” Hybe explained.

Hybe, the agency that houses supergroup BTS, acquired a 14.8 percent stake in SM from Lee Soo-man on Feb. 10, amid an internal business management feud between Lee and the co-CEOs of SM, Lee Sung-soo and Tak Young-jun.

Meanwhile, the term of SM’s co-CEOs comes to an end on March 27. They are aiming for a second term with the help of a strategic partnership formed with tech giant Kakao.

SM Entertainment will suggest Align Partners Capital Management CEO Lee Chang-hwan for the non-executive director position, and three others submitted by Align Partners for outside director positions.