Dacom to Focus More on E-Commerce

In a bid find an alternative to its poor performance in telephone service operations, Korean long-distance telecom Dacom plans to restructure its existing businesses by focusing more on e-commerce and other Internet-related services.

“In order to overcome the limited growth potential of the phone service
business, we will concentrate our efforts on promoting Internet-related
businesses, which appears to have a great potential for growth in the
21st
century,” said Kwak Chi-Young, president and CEO of Dacom.

The company’s new “Vision 21” business plan calls for an
investment of 1 trillion won (about US$833 million) by the year 2001 and an
additional 3 trillion won (US$2.5 billion) by 2005 in such business
sectors
as e-commerce and online information services.

In this connection, Dacom is planning to greatly expand its network
facilities
to offer high-speed Internet access at a speed of 2.5Gbps, while
investing
400 billion won (US$333 million) in such business areas as the
next-generation
mobile telecommunication IMT 2000 and satellite telecommunication
service.

Dacom will also relocate more than a half of its employees to online information service Chollian and other Internet related business sectors by 2001 as part of its internal restructuring scheme.

Company officials said that Dacom will launch a portal service in 2001
by combining its online information service Chollian with Shimmani, its
in-house search engine that is considered as one of the most popular
search
engines in Korea.

Under such a restructuring program, the company intends to raise its
annual
sales turnover to 5.3 trillion won (US$4.4 billion) by 2005, thus
emerging as
Korea’s leading player in Internet service business.

“By 2001, Dacom will achieve 960 billion won (US$800 million) in sales
from
electronic commerce and online information services. By doing so, we
expect to
see the proportion of these business sectors rise from the current 34
percent
of our total sales to 64 percent,” Kwak said.

He added that his company will be listed in the NASDAQ some
time next year in an effort to raise corporate value.

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