Daum considering a partial move to the provinces

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Daum considering a partial move to the provinces

Daum, one of the leading Internet portal sites in Korea, is being wooed by offers from the provinces because of a pinch in its present accommodations caused by the rapid growth of its staff. The company is now headquartered on Teheran St. in southern Seoul, but it considering moving to larger quarters elsewhere in the city and moving some of its operations to areas outside the metropolitan area. “With worsening traffic conditions and rising costs in Seoul, there is no reason to stick to Teheran St.,” said Lee Jae-woong, Daum’s president and chief executive officer. “The company is looking for a place to which all of its operations can move together, but is also considering moving separately to difference places.” An official at Daum said there were a number of provincial governments who seemed willing to offer incentives to Daum to relocate in their jurisdiction. He added that research and development activities were the most likely to be moved outside of Seoul if a decision was made to break up its physical operating site. Among the areas being considered by Daum are Yeouido in Seoul; Bundang district in Seongnam, Gyeonggi province; Chuncheon; Jeonju; Busan and Jeju, Korea’s southern island province. Daum officials said they have recently sent employees to those areas to check on the facilities available there. Daum started facing an office space pinch when the number of its employee nearly doubled in the last year, to 500. The firm leased an additional floor at the Dacom Building on Teheran St.; it now fills four floors there. But officials said the space was still not enough, and the firm has rented additional office space in nearby buildings. Revenue at the firm is rising fast. Daum announced yesterday third quarter results; sales reached 37.9 billion won ($32 million), up 87 percent from the same period last year, and its operating profit jumped 153 percent to 10.4 billion won. That is the seventh consecutive quarterly profit increase. Daum recently opened a multimedia portal, Cube, and a job information site, Workey, and is entering the auto insurance business. The next targets, Mr. Lee said, were media, video on demand and games. by Cho Min-guen

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