Teen Top members Niel and Changjo will reportedly leave their long-time agency, TOP Media, for good.

On Tuesday, TOP Media announced through its official website that Niel and Changjo’s contracts with them will end on January 10, 2022. The two Teen Top members reportedly chose not to renew it.

The agency expressed its gratitude for everyone who has been loving and encouraging the boy group in the past 12 years. However, the two members chose to end their 12-year connection by not renewing their contracts.

However, it also assured Niel and Changjo will still be part of the boy group despite cutting ties from the agency.

“After sharing sincere conversations with Niel and Changjo for a long time, we have decided to not proceed with a renewal of contracts. However, even after the contract expires, Niel and Changjo will continue with Teen Top’s activities due to the deep affection and trust that the members have with each other,” it said, as translated by AllKpop.

In addition, TOP Media revealed Niel would drop a solo track in January, marking his last project with the agency.

Teen Top Loses Popularity Over the Years

Teen Top, who debuted as a second-generation group, lost their sparks since their debut.

In an interview with News-ade, the boy group was asked what’s their honest opinion about Teen Top’s status during their ninth year. At that time, Changjo said they let go of a lot of things and needed to climb back up to regain their popularity.

Meanwhile, CAP said that their number of fans decreased by about a quarter.

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“I remember being pretty good at the time of ‘Rocking’. It dropped a little during ‘Missing’ and then we really fell during ‘Warning Sign’,” Niel said.

The news outlet then asked them what they think the reason behind that unfortunate event, with Changjo saying the group went in a different direction from what their fans expected them to be.

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Meanwhile, fans also made a Reddit thread where they discussed the possible reasons why the group lost their popularity aside from L. Joe leaving the group.

“I also believe Teen Top may have lost some fans due to controversies, such as the sexist comment CAP made in 2012, and of course L.Joe leaving the group, but I guess that’s more speculative since a lot of groups lose members and have controversies without losing as many fans as drastically as Teen Top has,” one explained.

Another added, “One of the main reasons is simply that they began making only one comeback a year fairly early into their career, while their fanbase never quite grew large or established enough to remain stable when the amount of promotions dwindled.”

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