KARA breakup official

January 15, 2016


SEOUL (Yonhap) — Girl group KARA’s dissolution is official, its agency said Friday, confirming what’s already been rumored for the last few weeks.

Park Gyu-ri, Han Seung-yeon and Goo Ha-ra won’t be renewing their contracts, which prematurely ended Friday, DSP Media said.

They had been scheduled to expire on Feb. 2 but the date was moved after media reports essentially confirmed the disbanding of the nine-year-old group.

“The three have decided to expand their activities into other fields as the contracts expired,” the agency said in a statement. “We want to cheer them on and wish them the best in their upcoming endeavors.”

The trio’s exits leave only Heo Young-ji, who joined the group in 2014, behind. DSP Media will continue to manage Heo and “help her develop as a singer as best as it can.”

Goo, who has been more active in Japan and China than in South Korea, is likely to move to an agency that has a strong overseas presence, such as Keyeast Entertainment, S.M. Culture & Contents or JYP Entertainment. Among the three, Keyeast appears the likeliest candidate, although the agency has refused to confirm these rumors.

Han and Park are believed to be searching for agencies that are the most capable of backing their acting careers.

KARA, which debuted in 2007, is one of the groups that started the girl group trend in South Korea.

The group is most noted for its activities in Japan. KARA surpassed Girls’ Generation to take first place in the Japanese yearly chart by Oricon in 2010. A year later, it sold a record number of CDs and DVDs for a South Korean artist in Japan. It also became the first South Korean girl group to perform at the Tokyo Dome in 2013.

The group, however, has undergone some rough patches in its near-decade existence.