LG Uplus targets $1.4B enterprise AI revenue by 2028

The South Korean mobile operator has outlined a two-pronged strategy that includes building an AI infrastructure and developing AI application services.

Gigi Onag, Senior Editor, APAC

July 5, 2024

3 Min Read
South Korea flag blowing in the wind
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South Korean mobile carrier LG Uplus has outlined a mid- to long-term AI growth strategy for its enterprise business, with the goal of reaching two trillion Korean won (US$1.4 billion) in B2B revenue by 2028, according to a report by The Korea Economic Daily.

LG Uplus executives unveiled its AI growth plan to local media in Seoul on Tuesday, revealing its two-pronged approach to achieving the B2B revenue target: developing AI application services while building the underlying AI infrastructure.

In a press statement, Kwon Yong-hyun, LG Uplus head of corporate division, said the "All in AI" strategy aims to focus company-wide capabilities on developing and applying the technology across all services to "grow together with enterprise customers."

The strategy will focus on AI data centers and on-device AI, AI platforms using small large language models (sLLMs), and AI-powered services for enterprise customers.

Building the AI infrastructure

As LG Uplus begins its enterprise AI push, the mobile operator is working to ensure that its hyperscale data centers, which are its backbone infrastructure, are better equipped to handle the coming AI application services.

The company plans to use its homegrown generative AI model, ixi-GEN, which was launched last month, to maximize the operational efficiency of AI servers in its data centers. It is also working with partners to develop optimized cooling technology.

LG Uplus currently operates two hyperscale data centers in Pyeongchon, south of Seoul. The company plans to build a third hyperscale facility, its largest to date, in Paju, Gyeonggi Province. The facility, which is expected to be completed in 2027, will be specifically designed as an AI data center with graphics processing units (GPUs) and liquid and immersion cooling. The site, which covers an area equivalent to nine football fields, will be able to accommodate more than 100,000 AI servers.

LG Uplus will also launch its first AI chip by the end of this year in partnership with startup DeepX, which specializes in neural processing units (NPUs) that are integral to on-device AI. LG Uplus plans to integrate the AI chips with ixi-GEN to develop solutions that can be applied to various industries, including telecom equipment, customer care, robotics and mobility.

Industry-specific AI platforms

Using ixi-GEN, LG Uplus said it will build industry-specific AI platforms, initially making its sLLM available to the finance, education and security industries this year.

"ixi-GEN has the advantage of being able to build AI services quickly and economically while maintaining expertise in specific industries, as it streamlines the number of parameters compared to the existing Large Language Model (LLM)," the mobile operator said in a statement.

The scope of the sLLM will vary depending on customer requirements. For now, ixi-GEN's parameters range from 8.8 billion to 25 billion.

Building AI-enabled services

LG Uplus said it will focus on providing AI application services in four areas: AI contact centers (AICC), small and medium enterprises, corporate communications and transportation.

For the AICC industry, the mobile operator plans to use ixi-GEN to provide answers tailored to the characteristics of the customer's industry. It also plans to add industry-specific AICC functions.

For small and medium enterprises, LG Uplus will offer an advanced package that integrates on-device AI into hardware such as kiosks, CCTV systems, POS systems and phones.

In the corporate communications sector, the mobile operator will launch a product in the second half of the year that integrates AI into all communication channels to increase operational efficiency and improve competitiveness while reducing costs.

In the transportation sector, LG Uplus will introduce AI into its freight brokerage platform, with plans to provide functions from dispatch to settlement.

To achieve the goal of its enterprise AI strategy, LG Uplus hopes to build an AI ecosystem by collaborating with research institutions and companies that provide AI solutions and platforms.

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About the Author(s)

Gigi Onag

Senior Editor, APAC, Light Reading

Gigi Onag is Senior Editor, APAC, Light Reading. She has been a technology journalist for more than 15 years, covering various aspects of enterprise IT across Asia-Pacific.

She started with regional IT publications under CMP Asia (now Informa), including Asia Computer Weekly, Intelligent Enterprise Asia and Network Computing Asia and Teledotcom Asia. This was followed by stints with Computerworld Hong Kong and sister publications FutureIoT and FutureCIO. She had contributed articles to South China Morning Post, TechTarget and PC Market among others.

She interspersed her career as a technology editor with a brief sojourn into public relations before returning to journalism, joining the editorial team of Mix Magazine, a MICE publication and its sister publication Business Traveller Asia Pacific.

Gigi is based in Hong Kong and is keen to delve deeper into the region’s wide wild world of telecoms.

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