RealTime IT News

Korea Thrunet Sells Assets

Following through on a restructuring. one of Korea's largest broadband ISPs is selling some of its domestic leased line cable assets, including a local fiber optic network, to New York-based SK Global in a $295 million deal.

SK Global is trading unit of South Korean conglomerate SK Group.

"With the purchase, we expect synergies in our telecommunications business, which includes handset sales, telecommunication equipment rental and roaming services," SK Global said.

Seoul, South Korea-based Korea Thrunet said it also is selling related equipment used in its leased line business. Thrunet is a cable modem broadband Internet-access provider and also markets enterprise network services.

Thrunet said it would use the proceeds to pay off debt and boost its sales and marketing efforts, as well as to "tighten relationships with system operators and independent dealers for the acquisition of new subscribers."

Thrunet's permit to lease Internet lines to corporate users does not transfer directly to the new owners, but SK Global said it expects to get its own permit from the Ministry of Information and Communication by the end of August or early September, according to a Reuters report.

"Thrunet still plans to sell its corporate headquarters building and raise foreign capital in the second half of this year," said CEO Hong Sun Lee. "Upon the successful completion of these restructuring plans and more focus on broadband Internet business, the company (should) improve its operating performance and financial structure."

Thrunet's stock was trading at 92 cents a share at mid-morning on Nasdaq.