Messaging Giant LINE Launches $10 Million Token Venture Fund


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Japanese messaging giant LINE has launched a token venture fund with a capital commitment of $10 million via its recently established subsidiary called Unblock Ventures.

The publicly traded firm announced the fund in a release on Wednesday and said it aims to invest in blockchain startups in an effort to boost technological development.

While Unblock Ventures, incorporated in Hong Kong in July, will be the fund’s manager, the $10 million capital is solely provided by LVC Corporation, another subsidiary of the LINE group. The company said it expects to increase the total amount of the fund in the future based on the development of the blockchain industry.

Today’s launch is part of LINE’s wider push into the cryptocurrency space and comes just a month after it officially started the operation of its cryptocurrency trading platform called Bitbox.

It was also announced today that Bitbox has listed TRX – the native token of the June launchedTRON blockchain – as the first crypto project listed on the exchange for trading following a review process conducted by a dedicated Bitbox committee. Following the news, the 24-hour trading price of TRX jumped by 12 percent, based on data from CoinMarketCap.

In April, CoinDesk reported that LINE was also planning to launch a subsidiary based in South Korea that will focus on researching blockchain technology and developing potential applications.

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Official Press Release:


BITBOX Exchange Adds TRON (TRX), as LINE Expands Cryptocurrency Businesses

• BITBOX’s listing committee approves TRON (TRX), a global decentralized blockchain platform

• 9 million TRX airdrop event runs until August 22

• LINE subsidiary unblock corp. launches USD10 million “unblock ventures" token fund for investing in early-stage blockchain startups

TOKYO – August 15, 2018 – LINE Corporation announced today that it has added TRON (TRX) to BITBOX, LINE’s recently launched cryptocurrency exchange. TRON (TRX), a global decentralized blockchain platform, is the first coin project to pass the review process by the BITBOX open-listing committee.

The open-listing committee and review process is part of BITBOX’s principle that all projects in the cryptocurrency community deserve an equal opportunity to be listed on the exchange. BITBOX is now accepting applications from other coin projects that want to join the exchange and that are prepared to undergo a thorough evaluation process.

The listing of TRON (TRX) – available for trading now on BITBOX – also shows LINE’s continuing commitment to diversifying its customers’ coin options and developing its cryptocurrency exchange business. As a user-centered exchange, BITBOX is focused on expanding the range of options available for its customers, while also providing efficient and secure cryptocurrency services.

In addition, to celebrate TRON’s listing on BITBOX, 9 million TRON coins will be airdropped to users on BITBOX, in a promotional event running until August 22.

TRON is dedicated to building the infrastructure for a truly decentralized internet. Since its successful Testnet launch in March 2018, TRON has followed with a series of achievements, including Mainnet launch in May, network independence in June, and testnet virtual machine launch on Testnet in July. That same month, TRON acquired BitTorrent, a pioneer in the decentralized services.

“Integrating TRON (TRX) with BITBOX will enable us to connect with the world’s fastest-growing blockchain project,” said Youngsu Ko, CEO of LINE Tech Plus, LINE’s Singapore-based subsidiary that operates BITBOX. “TRON has a solid tech platform, especially now it has joined forces with BitTorrent. We look forward to building a strategic partnership with TRON and offering our users the best experience available in the cryptocurrency space.”

“We are very excited to partner with LINE on their launch into the cryptocurrency space,” said Justin Sun, founder and CEO of TRON. “We will use our expertise in the industry to help LINE provide fast and secure cutting-edge crypto exchange services. By joining this vibrant project, we aim to reach a broader audience, extend our services to mobile, and connect the dots with our other products, which have more than 100 million users (BitTorrent, Peiwo, etc.). We are looking forward to working further with LINE on more product integration.”

Token venture fund launched by unblock corporation

In another measure to develop a blockchain startup ecosystem, LINE’s subsidiary unblock corporation recently established “unblock ventures ltd.,” a corporate token venture fund. Unblock ventures focuses on token investments and has a capital commitment of USD10 million, made by LVC Corporation (another LINE group company). Additionally, unblock ventures’ token fund is expected to expand in the future, according to the growth of the blockchain market.

By launching this new corporate token fund, LINE is aiming to boost the development and adoption of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. As such, LINE is one of the first publicly traded corporations to formalize token investments through a corporate fund.

■unblock ventures ltd. Overview

Name: unblock ventures ltd.

Representative: Heewoo Lee, CEO

Location of incorporation: Hong Kong

Established: July 2018

Sole investor: LVC Corporation

Fund management: unblock ventures ltd.

Investment type: Token Venture Fund

Investment areas: Blockchain startups

Capital commitment: USD10,000,000

About LINE Corporation

Based in Japan, LINE Corporation (NYSE:LN/TSE:3938) is dedicated to the mission of “Closing the Distance,” bringing together information, services and people. The LINE messaging app launched in June 2011 and since then has grown into a diverse, global ecosystem that includes AI technology, fintech and more.

About unblock corporation

Based in Korea, unblock corporation is a subsidiary of LINE Plus Corporation, specializing in blockchain technology. Since its launch in April 2018, the company has been tasked with designing a token economy, performing market research on cryptocurrencies, and developing an accelerator program.

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