Japanese messaging app Line seeks cryptocurrency exchange licence

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After initially struggling to maintain investor enthusiasm, strong sales of advertising space on its messaging app have seen its stock gain nearly 60 percent from its IPO price.

Line Corp., mobile messenger app unit of South Korea's leading online portal operator Naver Corp., announced to launch cryptocurrency exchange business in Japan as part of its strategy to create a synergy based on its top messaging platform with more than 120 million users in Japan and its financial service "Line Pay". Last year, Line Pay saw overall volume of annual transaction rise to nearly 450 billion Japanese yen ($4,135,500,000), and registered users hit 40 million, the release claims.

The new company, dubbed Line Financial Corporation, will provide a platform to transact and exchange digital currencies, insurance and loans, a company release states.

Line has over 200 million users with at least 25% of them in Japan alone.

The app, known for electronic stickers of a brown bear and his rabbit girlfriend, is ubiquitous in Japan, Line also has a strong presence in Taiwan, Thailand and Indonesia. This is a huge number, taking into account that one of the leading cryptocurrency exchanges, Coinbase, has nearly 13 million users.

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Its $1.1 billion US-Japan IPO in 2016 failed to gain traction across the rest of the world so the firm has focused on its core markets in Asia.

However it seems that LINE wants to be more than just a chat app and has announced their plans to launch their own cryptocurrency exchange.

Line could be the largest consumer-focused organization to get into crypto lately.

The company announced on January the 31 that it has made a decision to provide a crypto exchange platform among other financial services.

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