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SM Entertainment confirms EXO's promotions as 8 members following Chen, Baekhyun and Xiumin's solo contracts

By Yoniel Acebuche Published Jan 09, 2024 2:39 pm

EXO's agency SM Entertainment confirmed on Monday, January 8, that all eight K-pop boy band members will continue activities together as a group.

In a statement reported by Korean media outlet Soompi, SM said that EXO will release new music and performances and a fan meeting in April.

"Going forward, all eight members of EXO will continue activities together as EXO. In addition to showcasing new music and performances, they plan on greeting fans without change through EXO's fan meeting scheduled for April as well as through various activities," the statement read.

This came after the group subunit EXO-CBX, consisting of Chen, Baekhyun, and Xiumin, started anew with their solo and unit activities at INB100, an independent label established by Baekhyun in June following an amicable settlement of their legal dispute over their contracts with SM.

According to the agency, the EXO-CBX members will still be under SM for group promotions with EXO after their exclusive contracts are renewed. However, individual activities will be managed by the newly-founded label.

"In the case of Chen (Kim Jong Dae), Baekhyun (Byun Baek Hyun), Xiumin (Kim Min Seok), we agreed to make it possible for the artists to proceed separately in the case of individual activities under the exclusive contracts mentioned above," SM said.

In the same report by the K-media outlet, a source from INB100 shared that the indie label was established based on "long-standing deliberation and aspirations" of the CBX members, who are entering their 13th year of activities this year.

The label is said to be planning to highlight the members' "musical individualities and colors" as well as assuring the fans that Chen, Baekhyun, and Xiumin will now have the opportunity to take on "creative challenges and experiments," adding that it's been the members' "longtime dreams." 

"We plan on further highlighting the members' musical individualities and colors, and going forward, we will play the role of the starting line for the members to take on creative challenges and experiments to communicate with fans in various directions and for their video production and music production [activities], which have been their longtime dreams."

D.O's departure to SM Entertainment

While Doh Kyung Soo, also known as D.O., left the South Korean multinational entertainment agency due to the expiration of his contract, SM said that the K-pop superstar "agreed to partake in EXO activities."

"D.O. (Doh Kyung Soo), whose exclusive contract expired, agreed to partake in EXO activities, and we are continuously in discussion regarding future activities."

In case you didn't know, the group's main vocalist left SM after not renewing his contract on October 18, saying it would expire in early November. He joined Company SooSoo, an independent label founded by Nam Kyungsoo, his longtime manager to embark on a solo career. 

As per the label, D.O. is gearing up for a solo comeback by releasing a solo album in the first half of this year.

"It's true that he's currently preparing for a new album with the goal of releasing it in the first half of the year. However, no specific details have been finalized at the moment," Company SooSoo said.

EXO debuted in 2012. It is composed of members D.O., Kai, Sehun, Suho, Baekhyun, Chanyeol, Xiumin, and Chen. Some of their hit songs are Growl, Love Me Right, Love Shot, and more.

In July 2023, the group released their comeback album EXIST with hit tracks like Cream Soda, Let Me In, and Cinderella, among others.