Profits are up at Line, but international users are slipping away

Andy Boxall | February 3, 2017

App Business


Messaging platform Line has closed 2016 with profits reaching almost $70m, but its user base is slipping internationally. Its financial report shows $1.2b in revenue for the past year, up 16.9% from 2015, with $328.1m taken in the final quarter alone.

However, during that last quarter of 2016, Line saw a decline in its user base, which had just managed to reach 220 million monthly active users. By the end of December, this number had fallen to 217 million.

TechinAsia’s graph shows Line’s user base drop

line users

What’s interesting here is the fall seems to be an international issue, as Line’s core user base, which comes from Japan, Thailand, Taiwan, and Indonesia, has grown. It now has 167 monthly active users in these locations, an increase of five million over the previous quarter, and an impressive 22 million year-on-year.

During the release of its quarterly and year end financials, Facebook revealed WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger have 1.2 billion and 1 billion users respectively.

Line’s latest move to attract new users is Line Works, a workplace chat app rivaling Slack. It’s subscription based, and is a spin-off of parent company Naver’s Works Mobile, which is already used by 68 million people.

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