Japan’s Line raising $1.3b via convertible bonds for money businesses

Japan’s Line Corp is raising around 148.1 billion yen ($1.33 billion) through convertible bonds to fund the popular chat app operator’s aggressive expansion in the financial services business.

The company said on Tuesday it plans to spend the bulk of the money raised on promotion of “LINEPay” and other new financial services by end-2021.

LINE Pay” allows users to send money to one another using the chat app as well as to do offline payment at stores. Line said the payment service’s transaction volume jumped 83 percent to 195 billion yen in its second quarter.

Line said it has 164 million monthly active users of the messaging app in Japan, Taiwan, Thailand and Indonesia.

The company is trying to take advantage of its wide, young user base beyond advertising business and is planning to launch a set of new financial services.

It has agreed with Nomura Holdings Inc to jointly set up an internet-focused securities brokerage.

The company has also set up a Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange BITBOX, though it has not obtained regulatory approval in Japan to run a crypto exchange.

In a statement on Tuesday, the company said it would issue zero coupon convertible bonds maturing in 2023 and 2025.

A portion of the bonds will be issued to South Korea-based parent Naver Corp to maintain its ownership above a certain level, Line said in a statement.

Naver’s stake would fall to 70.42 percent from the current 72.86 percent when all the bonds are converted into stock.

Reuters

 

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.