Blackpink member Lisa made headlines yesterday (Jun 2) when Korean media outlet Market News claimed that her former manager had swindled her of 1bil won (S$1.15mil). According to reports, the Thai-born, Korea-based star had trusted her manager with her money as he had told her that he would be investing in real estate. However, he used it all to fund his gambling habit.
Her label YG Entertainment has since issued a statement acknowledging the reports but the statement stopped short of confirming how much the 23-year-old K-pop star was cheated out of. “Lisa wishes to settle the matter amicably as her former manager was someone she trusted. [He] has paid her back part of the money and left the company after agreeing on a reimbursement plan for the remainder [of his debt].”
YG then apologised for the incident, calling the misconduct “embarrassing”. They added that they will take measures to ensure that such incidents within the company will not happen again.
This piece of news was especially alarming because the manager had been described as “well-respected” and "trusted" by his colleagues and all four members of Blackpink. A source close to the company also said that Lisa, who is Thai, is especially vulnerable to such situations because she has been living in Korea and away from her family since young.
After the initial shock of the scandal wore off, netizens caught on to a detail that they overlooked when the news first broke. “Wow, Lisa earned more than 1 billion won in less than four years,” marveled netizens. What followed was a debate on how much celebs are earning, with one netizen calling the wage disparity in the country “grossly unfair”.
However not everyone felt the same way. “If you think it’s so unfair, why don’t you try being a celeb too? If you manage to get to the top, then you can decide for yourself if it’s fair," responded one netizen.