Line said it will start trading cryptocurrencies through "Line Financial", a new company that will also provide loans and insurance via its Line messaging app. Line now provides money transfer and payment services to 40 million users through its app.
The upcoming crypto exchange of the company will be incorporated into LINE's existing in-app mobile payment service, LINE Pay. 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. It claimed that its payments unit had scored "major growth" in 2017, with a global annual transaction volume of more than 450 billion yen ($4.1 billion) and 40 million registered users.
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 70 million users in Japan alone, but is also very popular in Indonesia, Thailand and Taiwan.
The company is upping its efforts to compete with rivals Facebook which owns Messenger and WhatsApp and crypto is hot property at the moment.
In terms of dealings in cryptocurrencies, Japan is one of the leading markets.
Line Corporation, the Tokyo-based company operating the chat app with over 200 million monthly users, has announced it is going to launch a cryptocurrency exchange. The hack is considered to be the biggest in the history of cryptocurrencies.
LINE has been expanding its ties with other financial institutions of late, with an agreement reached earlier this month with Folio, an online-based securities company, to lay the groundwork for the launch of an asset management service.