Japan's Line to create smartphone bank with Mizuho

Japan's Line to create smartphone bank with Mizuho

Japanese chat app operator Line is forming a joint venture with Mizuho to launch a new smartphone-based bank.

For Mizuho, the deal represents an opportunity to utilise Line's millennial-friendly UX chops to reach a younger generation of customers. The joint venture will be squarely aimed at Line's 78 million customer base.

The agreement follows an earlier deal negotiated with rival bank Nomura to join with Line in the creation of an online brokerage operation.

Line's ambition to grow its financial services operations was further underscored with a separate announcement to partner with Tencent to process transactions from the Chines firm's WeChat mobile payments service via Line Pay terminals installed in Japanese shops.

The news lifted Line's share by 13%, adding $1 billion to the company's stock market value.

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