Lee Seung-gi expresses disdain after Hook Entertainment's denial of withholding money

Singer Lee Seung-gi [HOOK ENTERTAINMENT]

Singer Lee Seung-gi expressed deep regret regarding his agency Hook Entertainment's denial of the accusation that it had not paid the singer for his songs and said it would be "meaningless" to further extend the conversation with the agency.

In a statement released Monday by Lee's legal representatives, law firms Bae Kim & Lee (BKL) and Bestway, Lee said the agency's argument in a statement released last Friday is not true, claiming the singer had never received any payment for digital streams or downloads of his songs.

"The definite fact is that Hook Entertainment purposely hid from Lee Seung-gi that there were profits being made from digital streams and downloads and that no proper payment was made," the statement read.

"The agency started providing payment records to the singer finally in 2018, but there was no single record related to digital streams and downloads."

Lee has been a popular singer since his debut in 2004.

Hook Entertainment released a statement last week saying that back in 2021, when the two parties were renewing their contract, they had “checked the settlement details” and even “wrote an agreement to confirm it.”

But Lee's legal representatives made it clear that the settlement details were not about the payments for Lee's songs, but were for Lee's investment during the process of the agency's purchase of a building. Lee invested 4.7 billion won ($3.5 million) toward the purchase.

"Hook Entertainment received 4.7 billion won from Lee in 2011 for the sake of purchasing a building, but the agency's CEO Kwon Jin-young did not keep any promise related to the investment," Lee's legal representatives said in a statement.

"As Lee said he will not renew his contract, the agency said it will account for the money as a loan instead of an investment, and wrote an agreement to scrap Lee's rights as an investor."

Lee's legal representatives questioned the agency on how the singer would have agreed on the payment if he was not aware of the fact that there was any money being made from digital streams and downloads of his songs.

Lee has come out with 137 songs throughout his 18-year career, many of which are still widely-known hits.

Hook Entertainment came under fire after voice recordings and chat screenshots surfaced online last week, claiming that the agency had never financially compensated Lee Seung-gi for his songs and continuously gaslighted him during his 18-year career.