Line Revenue and Usage Statistics (2021)

Mansoor Iqbal

Updated: September 14, 2021

LINE is a Japanese instant messenger app, produced by the eponymous corporation.

In Asia, the most popular instant messenger apps have evolved to become platforms in their own right. On these, users can play games, send money, shop and much more. WeChat in China is perhaps the most prominent and diverse example. Across the Sea of Japan, LINE offers a similar service.

The app was originally developed as an emergency solution for company (then known as NHN Japan) employees during the Tōhoku earthquake of 2011.

LINE as it is now offers much-expanded functionality compared to this practical beginning. Peer-to-peer payments, taxi rides, food delivery and online ordering, music streaming and comic book reading are all available from inside the messaging app.

And of course, there’s the actual messenger app, through which LINE users can send each other stickers. These cute illustrations, utilised as a visual language, have long been one of LINE’s key revenue drivers. These proved so popular that LINE even earned a fair chunk of revenue through merchandising and licensing deals for these characters.

In 2019, LINE shifted from a public company to a part of Z Holdings, which is a joint venture between SoftBank and Naver Corporation. Yahoo! Japan and PayPay are also part of the holding company, which is public on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

We have collected data and statistics on LINE. Read on below to find out more.

LINE key statistics

  • LINE generated $1.51 billion revenue in 2020, primarily from advertising
  • LINE had a net loss of $411 million in 2020, lower than its $470 million net loss in 2019
  • An estimated 224 million people use LINE once a month, with 86 million in Japan
  • LINE users transacted almost $15 billion on the app in 2020

LINE overview

Launch date 11 June 2011
HQ Tokyo, Japan
People Takeshi Idezawa (CEO)
Business type Subsidiary
Owner Z Holdings (SoftBank and Naver)
Industry Communication

LINE revenue

Year Revenue
2012 $59 million
2013 $393 million
2014 $811 million
2015 $1.09 billion
2016 $1.35 billion
2017 $1.52 billion
2018 $1.88 billion
2019 $2.06 billion
2020 $1.51 billion

Source: Company data

LINE net income

Year Net income
2016 $65 million
2017 $75 million
2018 ($52 million)
2019 ($470 million)
2020 ($411 million)

Note: Parentheses indicates loss 

Source: Company data

LINE users

Year Users
2014 83 million
2015 121 million
2016 143 million
2017 169 million
2018 164 million
2019 164 million
2020 169 million

Note: LINE publishes MAU figures for its four largest markets (Indonesia, Japan, Taiwan and Thailand), which account for approximately 2/3rds of LINE’s total MAUs

Source: Company data

LINE Pay transaction volume

Year Transaction volume
2017 $4.26 billion
2018 $9.71 billion
2019 $10.72 billion
2020 $14.96 billion

Source: Company data

LINE Pay users

Year Users
2018 2.64 million
2019 7.41 million
2020 5.59 million

Source: Company data

LINE FAQ

How many users does LINE have worldwide?

We estimate LINE has 224 million users. 169 million are based in LINE’s four key markets: Indonesia, Japan, Taiwan and Thailand

How many of LINE’s users access the app daily?

According to LINE, 80% of its MAUs are also DAUs

How many users does LINE have in the U.S.?

There were 3.15 million LINE users in the U.S. in September 2019

How many users does LINE Music have?

LINE had 11 million users as of June 2019, but has not updated that figure since (The Verge)

Who owns LINE?

LINE is part of Z Holdings, which also operates Yahoo! Japan and PayPay, which are leaders in their respective markets in Japan. Z Holdings is a 32.65% partnership between SoftBank and Naver Corporation

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