South Korean rapper I.M is leaving Starship Entertainment but will continue to be a part of its popular boy band Monsta X, the K-pop company announced Monday.
In a statement published in full by Korean entertainment news portal Soompi, Starship said all the Monsta X members except I.M — whose real name is Im Changkyun — have re-signed with the label.
"As all six members still have unchanging affection for MONSTA X and MONBEBE, we have come to a mutual agreement for I.M to continue together for future group activities," Starship said, referring to the group's fan club.
The label thanked I.M for his "hard work, efforts, and devotion over the years."
"We will cheer on and support I.M’s future activities and his new path," Starship added.
Formed through the reality show "No.Mercy," Monsta X debuted in May 2015, originally with 7 members until Wonho's departure in October 2019.
Over the years, the group has built a large following with an aggressive signature sound that blends hip hop and EDM, though it also releases light R&B- and funk-inspired tracks.
In February 2020, Monsta X released its first English-language album, "All About Luv," which peaked at No. 5 on the Billboard 200 chart that ranks popular albums in the United States.
The band last visited Manila in September 2019.