Japanese Messaging Giant Line Launches Own Cryptocurrency, Blockchain Platform

Line’s Link tokens will be handed out as rewards and can be used within the Line ecosystem or traded on Bitbox.

Line, the popular Japanese instant messenger application which launched crypto trading earlier this year, said on Friday it is launching its own cryptocurrency – Link, as well as a blockchain network Link Chain.

Both the cryptocurrency and the blockchain were developed independently by Line, the company said in a statement.

“With the launch, Line becomes one of the largest and most-established companies to develop and issue a cryptocurrency,” the statement reads.

Unlike many other cryptocurrencies and tokens that are released as an initial coin offering (ICO), Line will distribute the Link tokens through a reward system for users who use certain services within the Line ecosystem.

The Link tokens can then be used as payments or rewards within the Link decentralized applications (dApp) system that will be launched shortly. They can be also used as payment for various categories like contents, commerce, social, gaming, exchange and more within the Line ecosystem.

In addition, Line plans to register Link exclusively on its own digital asset exchange Bitbox in September and to distribute it among users. The clients of Bitbox will also be able to trade Link for other cryptocurrencies and the other way around. Bitbox will also offer exclusive benefits to holders of Link, such as discounts on trading fees and other promotions.

Line’s blockchain Link Chain, is a service-oriented mainnet network that allows dApps to be directly applied in the Line messenger. However, the access to Link Chain will be limited only to Line-developer dApps. On the contrary, in order to expand and develop the blockchain ecosystem, Line will encourage other participants onto the network.

“Over the last seven years, Line was able to grow into a global service because of our users, and now with Link, we wanted to build a user-friendly reward system that gives back to our users,” Line CEO Takeshi Idezawa said. “With Link, we would like to continue developing as a user participation-based platform, one that rewards and shares added value through the introduction of easy-to-use dApps for people’s daily lives.”

Line will gradually release a total of one billion Link tokens, in accordance with the ecosystem development. Of them, 800 million will be allocated for user rewards and 200 million will be managed as a reserve.