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Korea Telecom will seek strategic business alliances with two of the country’s top cable TV program producers, as a prelude to next year’s launch of its Internet Protocol TV services.

“We will set aside 150 billion won ($165 million) next year to find new sources of media content,” KT president Nam Joong-soo said Tuesday, according to the Korea Times.

KT’s VP in charge of content, Lee Chi-hyung, named Onmedia, part of the Mediaplex/Orion Group, and Mnet Media of the CJ Group, as prospective partners.

KT is keen to develop sources of revenue beyond traditional telephony and expects to rival the country’s cable network operators.

To do that, it will need to upgrade broadband connections and content. It already plans to spend $1.3 billion through 2010 to upgrade its high-speed Internet network. And it has begun buying into movie production houses such as Sidus FNH.