[THE INVESTOR] Naver-owned mobile messenger app Line on Oct. 29 said its subsidiary Line Financial Asia has acquired a 20 percent stake in the Indonesian unit of KEB Hana Bank, in a bid to expand its fintech operations in the country.
The financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed, but the latest deal has made Line Financial Asia the second-largest shareholder of PT Bank KEB Hana.
“Through this partnership, we will launch easy-to-use and innovative banking services in Indonesia,” said Line Financial Asia CEO Hwang In-joon. “This agreement is an important step toward becoming a leader in mobile banking and expanding our fintech services.”
“I believe Line’s advanced digital technology and KEB Hana Bank’s retail banking experience will prove to be the future of the banking industry, demonstrating a new financial model that begins in Indonesia.” said PT Bank KEB Hana President Lee Hwa-soo.
The two firms will officially close the deal after obtaining approval from Indonesia’s financial authorities.
After government clearance, Line -- one of the most popular chatting apps in Indonesia -- plans to launch a new digital banking service next year, utilizing KEB Hana’s successful market presence in the country.
Meanwhile, KEB Hana will add Line’s large user-base as its potential customers and strengthen its digital marketing capabilities.
Under the partnership, the two firms are seeking to provide deposit and microcredit products, as well as remittance and payment services in Indonesia. They also seek to improve credit rating models through projects with local and international rating agencies and create an identity verification process, such as e-KYC, optimized for local regulations.
By Ahn Sung-mi (firstname.lastname@example.org)