Messaging app Line is expanding its financial services with the launch of Line Financial Corporation. A subsidiary that will work in tandem with the existing Line Pay to provide more financial services through its messaging service.
According to the official announcement, Line will be using the new business to offer “an even more revolutionary financial service”. For the most part, this seems to be providing loans and insurance right from the app itself. Although, the more interesting option is for the exchange of virtual currencies.
Line has already applied to the Financial Services Agency for the right to operate as a cryptocurrency exchange. Something that isn’t too difficult to imagine happening, as Japan has fully embraced the idea of cryptocurrency. How long the application process will take is another story; but we don’t expect it to take too much time.
The Japanese company already operates Line Pay, which is it’s version of a digital wallet. Adding more financial services will allow it to compete with the services coming out of China, where WeChat already has a head start on providing personal loans through a messaging app.
We’re unlikely to benefit from any of these services here in Malaysia; seeing that it requires applications with local regulators. However, the cryptocurrency exchange may be available thanks to its decentralised nature. Having the backing of a company like Line would likely be a safer bet than the number of smaller exchanges that are becoming more tempting targets for cybercriminals.