Line targets $1.3B warchest for finance, AI push - Mobile World Live

Line targets $1.3B warchest for finance, AI push

04 SEP 2018

Japan-based messaging company Line is set to raise JPY148 billion ($1.33 billion) to fuel the growth of its financial services business and boost R&D in its artificial intelligence (AI) division.

The company said the cash would be raised by selling convertible bonds to investors, scheduled to mature in 2023 and 2025.

JPY100 billion is earmarked to fund the expansion of mobile payments platform Line Pay and develop infrastructure to offer a wider range of financial services.

Line is planning extensive promotion of Line Pay in a bid to increase its user base and grow the number of merchants signed-up to offer the service.

In a statement to investors the company said it would: “Pursue new business opportunities, in many cases through collaboration with financial industry partners in areas such as online securities brokerage, insurance sales, consumer loans and other financial services.”

The remainder of the funds will be used to step up R&D into AI technology, including further developments to its Clova platform. It plans to both increase in-house capabilities and outsource elements of the research.

Line’s move is the latest indication the company is enacting extensive growth plans. Earlier this week it unveiled its own cryptocurrency Link Chain for use within its range of apps and platforms.

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Chris Donkin

Chris joined the Mobile World Live team in November 2016 having previously worked at a number of UK media outlets including Trinity Mirror, The Press Association and UK telecoms publication Mobile News. After spending 10 years in journalism, he moved...

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