‘Line Bank’ will be set up in partnership with up to five local partners to take deposits, provide loans, and sell mutual funds and insurance policies.
Japan’s Line Corp has announced plans to set up a local office in Taiwan and team up with local lenders to set up an Internet-only bank.
Line regional chief Liu I-cheng reportedly made the announcement at a news conference in Taipei, a day after the company agreed to sell a 30 percent stake to two Taiwanese lenders, Taipei Fubon Commercial Bank and Union Bank of Taiwan.
“We aim to join hands with local financial institutions to set up Line Bank, a Web-only bank that will offer new financial services and products,” Liu said. Line Bank will take deposits, provide loans, and sell mutual funds and insurance policies, but will not issue credit cards or establish securities units.
Line Corp’s new entity, Line Financial Taiwan Corp, will not own more than 50 percent of Line Bank and it will limit the number of partners to five, in line with local regulations.
The rules were announced in April, with Taiwan’s FSC (Financial Supervisory Commission) indicating plans to issue two Internet-only bank licences. The regulator is presently drafting rules on their requirements and operations so interested parties can file applications later this year and start services by the end of next year.
Line Pay has already entered the local e-payment market since August 2015 and now has 3 million users, making it the most popular e-payment platform.