Japanese Messaging App ‘Line’ To Issue Its Own Crypto To Leverage Across Services


Line, the Japanese subsidiary of South Korea’s internet giant Naver Corp. announced on Friday that it has concluded plans to launch its own cryptocurrency this month.

This move will make it the first publicly traded companies to have launched a proprietary blockchain mainnet with its own cryptocurrency.

Line embracing crypto and blockchain

The firm stated that the move means that it is embracing the latest fintech technology to further grow its popular messaging platform. Line added that the genesis block of its LINK Chain was produced on Aug. 23.

According to LINE’s white paper, the firm is looking to release an initial two dApps this month, with ten more to be released by the first quarter of next year.

The messaging giant is now set to gradually issue a total of 1 billion of the network’s LINK tokens. The company will reserve 200 million tokens while the remaining 800 million will be distributed to public users.

The tokens will be distributed not via ICOs as most crypto projects do. Line will offer it as compensation for using certain services within Line, a messaging app widely used across Japan and Southeast Asia.

Line aims to use the token as a payment or reward for its decentralized apps (dApps) which will soon be launched under the Line messaging app.

The token dubbed Link will start trading this month on Bitbox, Line’s exchange platform and will also run on its own blockchain.

A spokesperson for the firm commented that:

We need fast confirmation time for a service-oriented blockchain platform. Thus the consensus algorithm of LINK Chain is delegated proof-of-stake consensus and practical Byzantine fault tolerance.

The messenger has been offering Line Pay smartphone wallet service for four years now, with over 40 million registered users all over the globe.

With more than $200 million invested in fintech and AI operations this, Line is planning to expand its services next year to include lending and insurance.

Line launches crypto exchange in Singapore despite the bear market

Two months ago, the company opened its cryptocurrency exchange BitBox despite the bear market affecting the prices of cryptocurrencies. Line currently offers trading between more than 30 virtual tokens including bitcoin, ethereum, bitcoin cash, and litecoin, but not fiat currencies.

The website is available in 15 languages to users worldwide. BitBox is however not available in Japan yet as it is yet to receive its license from the FSA. For this reason, Japanese traders will receive what’s called a LINK Point for now.

The LINK Point will be exchanged for the full crypto asset once BitBox is granted a license in the country.

A source close to the firm stated that Line is working on a stand-alone mobile app for the exchange, which will be separate from its messaging service.

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