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February 4, 2019

LINE infuses $182m into payments arm

Tokyo-based chat app operator LINE has announced plans to inject JPY20bn ($182m) into its mobile payment unit LINE Pay.

In a filing, the Japanese firm stated that the investment will support its “future business operation”.

The firm did not reveal further details on how the capital will be used.

“Since the total capitalisation of LINE Pay Corporation has become equivalent to ten-hundredths or greater of the Company’s total capitalisation with the completion of the capital increase, LINE Pay Corporation corresponds to a specified subsidiary,” LINE said in the filing.

LINE Pay, established in 2014, is used to make fund transfers or purchases in brick-and-mortar and online stores.

Users can load their accounts at convenience stores, ATMs, or through bank transfer.

The latest move comes close on the heels of LINE Pay’s launch of a co-branded credit card in association with Visa.

The card offers 3% reward points for purchases made in the first year.

In November 2018, LINE partnered with Tencent, the firm behind China’s messaging app WeChat, to offer mobile payment services for Japanese merchants.

The alliance enabled Japanese retailers with a Line Pay terminal to directly process WeChat Pay transactions.

Earlier last year, LINE announced plans to launch a cryptocurrency exchange called Bitbox in Singapore.

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