SK Telecom, the largest wireless carrier in South Korea, positioned itself to compete in the Korean broadband services market with the U.S. $1.2 billion purchase of a 38.9% stake in Hanarotelecom (Hanaro) that will give SK control of the nation’s second-largest broadband provider. Only market leader Korea Telecom, which owns 44% of the Korean broadband market, surpasses Hanaro, which boasts 3.7 million subscribers for a 25% share of the national broadband market. SK, which was selected as the preferred bidder for the stake last month, would purchase Hanaro shares owned by a U.S. private equity consortium consisting of the American International Group, TPG Capital, and TVG Capital Partners. (The group acquired the stake in 2003 for U.S. $500 million.) SK will add the group’s shares to its existing 4.7% Hanaro stake, bringing its total holding to 43.6%. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval. Predicting that the deal will “bring new growth opportunities for the Korean IT industry,” SK CEO Shin Bae Kim said: “building on our strong expertise in convergence . . . we will strive to create new global business models such as developing wired and wireless integrated service with Hanaro.”