Former IZ*ONE member Honda Hitomi is likely to return to the K-pop industry after ending contact with the Japanese agency; Report

Honda Hitomi, a member of former girl group IZ*ONE, is expected to follow in the footsteps of her former bandmate LE SSERAFIM’s Sakura. As she ends her exclusive contract with the Japanese agency, media reports suggest, she could return to the K-pop industry. Although nothing has been announced as of yet, the latest update has sparked curiosity about her return.

Honda Hitomi, former member of IZ*ONE, ends contract with Japanese agency; Reports predict her return to K-pop.

On May 3, several media reports appeared indicating that Honda Hitomi had expired its exclusive contract with the Japanese agency. Previously, on May 1, her now former agency Mama&Son announced that the singer’s contract had come to an end, as a result of Honda Hitomi’s wishes.

The agency stated that they respect the artist’s decision as she seeks new opportunities in her career. The Japanese agency also expressed their utmost gratitude towards the former IZ*ONE member for being with them, even if it was for a short time.

Following the news of her contract expiring, an internal industry report predicted that she wishes to continue her dreams of singing and dancing as she hits the global stage. According to previous media coverage in January, she is eager to follow in the footsteps of Sakura, who debuted with LE SSERAFIM after the dissolution of IZ*ONE.

Who is Honda Hitomi?

Honda Hitomi participated in Mnet’s popular survival music show Produce 48. At the end of the show, she was selected to debut with a new girl group called IZ*ONE. In 2018, along with Honda Hitomi, Wonyoung and Yujin of IVE, Sakura and Chaewon of LE SSERFAIM, Yuri, Kwon Eunbi and more five girls debuted as members of this Korean-Japanese group.

Initially formed by CJ E&M Entertainment, the group was managed by Stone Music subsidiary Off The Record, Swing Entertainment and Japanese agency AKS.

With other members, Honda Hiomi also split from IZ*ONE, when it disbanded in 2021. Returning to Japan, she continued her activities as a member of AKB48, a Japanese idol girl group, with which she debuted in 2014. In 2023, He separated from the band.

Notably, Sakura was also a member of AKB48 and in 2018 she left her path, making her K-pop debut with IZ*ONE.

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