LINE looks to partner with mobile game devs in Taiwan and Thailand

Building presence in its #1 markets

LINE looks to partner with mobile game devs in Taiwan and Thailand

Mobile messaging and social network LINE Corporation has announced its full year financials, for the 12 months ending 31 December 2014.

Annual revenues for the entire company were $720 million (¥86.3 billion), up 114 percent year-on-year.

In terms of revenues from the core LINE messaging services, these were $646 million (¥77.4 billion), up 126 percent year-on-year.

Looking at core Q4 revenues, they were $197 million (¥23.6 billion), up 10 percent quarter-on-quarter or 84 percent year-on-year.

Going global

The platform has 181 million monthly active users, and it's the #1 mobile messaging network in Japan, Taiwan and Thailand.

This is up from the 170 million monthly active users announced in November 2014.

There are now 13 countries which have more than 10 million LINE users, with Turkey being the most recent country to join that list.

The core part of LINE's ability to generate revenue comes from its growing game portfolio. During Q4, it released six new games, including three that feature popular LINE characters.

The company is backing these releases with offline marketing and TV advertising, and promotion in Korea, Taiwan and the US pushed Japanese hit LINE: Disney Tsum Tsum to over 30 million downloads in October - something we considered in one of our recent Charticles.

LINE is now looking to expand beyond its staple of casual games to RPGs and other midcore genres. It's already signed a deal with Japanese publisher GREE for exclusive content, and it's now looking to work with developers to Taiwan and Thailand to target those markets.

Everything changed

"Looking back on 2014, it truly was a decisive year. We decided not to settle as just a simple messenger app, but instead resolved to become the world leader in platform development with our LIFE and Entertainment platforms as the centerpieces of our efforts," commented CEO Akira Morikawa.

"Along with this new strategy, we shifted gears starting in the fourth quarter of 2014, switching from a focus on increasing our worldwide user numbers globally to a strategy where we focus on high priority markets and proactively invest in markets where we hold the top share, such as Japan, Taiwan, and Thailand.

"We are also focusing on markets where we are in close competition for the top share, including Indonesia, the Philippines and other Southeast Asian countries, as well as South American countries like Colombia and Mexico."

[source: LINE Corporation]

Contributing Editor

A Pocket Gamer co-founder, Jon is Contributing Editor at which means he acts like a slightly confused uncle who's forgotten where he's left his glasses. As well as letters and cameras, he likes imaginary numbers and legumes.