Indian handset maker Micromax is reportedly looking to expand its international clout by acquiring a stake in South Korea’s Pantech, sources told The Wall Street Journal.

Qualcomm and Samsung both have stakes in Pantech, which last year shifted focus to its domestic market after struggling to make a profit from its international strategy.

However, Samsung and LG are tough competitors in South Korea and Pantech was forced to turn to creditors in February for help in dealing with debts of more than $1 billion.

One source said a merger or an acquisition is being considered as ways to revive the company, although there has been little interest from buyers in South Korea.

The sources did not specify whether Micromax is considering a minor or controlling stake in Pantech.

Only Samsung heads Micromax in terms of smartphone shipments in India and an investment in Pantech could help with its ambitions to become a more significant force internationally.

According to analysts, Micromax could also benefit from Pantech’s high-end smartphone technology and manufacturing facilities.

In October 2013, Micromax unveiled its high-end smartphone, Canvas Turbo, with reports suggesting the device was part of the company’s plan to expand its international reach.

The company was identified as a potential “rising star” by research firm IDC last year, with the potential to grow its position in emerging markets.

Micromax was one of 12 handset makers to strike a deal in November with BlackBerry to pre-install the BBM messaging service on devices sold in emerging markets.