[THE INVESTOR] Korea’s top mobile carrier SK Telecom announced on Jan. 3 that it plans to merge its over-the-top media service Oksusu with Pooq which offers programs on terrestrial TV channels.
The merger would enable subscribers of its subsidiary SK Broadband’s own mobile video streaming service Oksusu to watch various contents provided by Pooq, a joint platform of Korea’s terrestrial broadcasters KBS, MBC and SBS.
The announcement comes after its smaller rival LG Uplus recently joined hands with Netflix. The partnership is likely to become a formidable competitor to YouTube which commands a 73 percent share in the Korean video-streaming market.
After SKT invests in the merged OTT media service -- by securing 30 percent stake in Pooq, with plans to raise it to 50 percent or more if the number of subscribers crosses 3 million -- it is seeking overseas expansion through SK Broadband. The new entity plans to focus on producing and supplying cultural contents.
Oksusu subscribers will be able to access Pooq, while the mobile firm will secure terrestrial broadcasting contents and strengthen its competitive edge, the company said.
By Lee So-jeong (firstname.lastname@example.org)