Messaging App Line Soars in its Initial Public Offering

September 15, 2016

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. share / ʃɛər / (n.) – partial ownership of a corporation
Example: She bought shares in the automobile company.

2. deem / dim /  (v.) – to form an opinion
Example: He deemed it necessary to borrow money for his business.

3. rake in  / reɪk ɪn  / (v.) – to bring in or collect
Example: The new service was deemed successful because it raked in more profit for the company.

4. enhance / ɛnˈhæns / (v.) – to improve
Example: They tried to enhance their product by using better ingredients.

5.  geographically / ˌdʒi əˈgræf ɪ kəli / (adv.) – related to location
Example: It will be better for the company if we focus on improving our services, rather than expanding geographically.


Read the text below.
Shares of Japan's Line Corporation, which owns the messaging app Line, soared in its initial public offering (IPO) that took place in July in New York and Tokyo.

From an initial public offering price of $31.20 per share, the value of the app operator's shares rose by 27% in New York City and by 32% in Tokyo. The funds raised reached $1.26 billion, making the event the biggest IPO of a technology company for the year so far. The event was also deemed to be Line's first step in expanding beyond its core markets in Southeast Asia.

Line was born out of necessity in 2011. It was a free communication app meant to bypass communication networks disabled by the earthquake and tsunami. Since then, it has also offered services that include taxi booking, mobile payments, music streaming, character creation, sticker sending, photo and video posting, and video games, which have raked in more profit for the company. With over 218 million active monthly users, it is currently the top messaging app in Japan, Taiwan, and Thailand. The app has also become very popular in Spain, Mexico, and Indonesia.

Despite the success of the IPO, the company is still facing numerous competition. Line’s competitors include industry giants such as Facebook Messenger, WeChat, WhatsApp, Skype, and Snapchat. For now, the company’s short-term solution is to focus on enhancing its products, rather than expanding geographically.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         If you had extra money, would you buy shares in a technology company? Why or why not?
·         What are some ways companies raise money?

Discussion B

·         Do you think profit is a good way of measuring the success of a company? Why or why not?
·         What local companies in your country do you consider extremely successful? Why do you think so?

September 15, 2016