RealTime IT News

BT Looksmart Rolls Out International Directory

[May 23] BT LookSmart, the joint venture between Internet search and navigation site LookSmart and telecommunications giant British Telecom (BT), has marked the roll out of its international business operations with the launch of its Korean directory.

Developed in conjunction with Web-based National Language Support provider Slangsoft, the site will enable Internet users located anywhere in the world to browse and interact in a range of languages.

Both the Korean directory and a Japanese version will go live simultaneously, comprising the company's first Asian language databases, including listings of over 30,000 unique URLs based on culturally sensitive and locally relevant information.

Since the beginning of 2000, LookSmart has increased the number of these international directories to 30 - all based on technology originally developed in Australia. "This number has increased from 23 at the end of last quarter and four a year ago," said BT LookSmart's chief executive officer Tim Pethick.

According to Pethick, as part of its entry strategy BT LookSmart is also looking to add Korean ISPs to those companies already signed on to become participants in a global rollout of LookSmart's directory content.

BTLookSmart has already signed a Korean media group and a local search engine company, each of whom will syndicate the LookSmart Korean directory into their portal offerings. Internationally, the JV has signed CLEAR Net in New Zealand, Maxis in Malaysia, Mantra in India, Infinito in Italy, Sunrise in Switzerland and Oceanfree.net in Ireland.