Naver Corp waits for better market conditions before deciding on IPO
Giant South Korean web portal operator Naver Corp is yet to decide on when put its messenger app unit Line Corp on Initial Public Offering (IPO) due to the present volatility of the market.
The company's CFO Hwang In-joon said Friday that the IPO documents for Line is currently under review by U.S. and Japanese authorities and that market are very volatile to give an exact date for the listing. Hwang said this after Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday that Japan's Line had cancelled its plan for IPO.
He said, "When choosing when to go to market, we need to consider whether we'll take our second quarter performance results with us, or third quarter or fourth quarter results. Our results in the second quarter were not that great."
Naver was preparing an IPO for Line in 2014. There are reports that Naver postponed the IPO to focus on Line's expansion. Later on, there was another report that Line would start trading shares in Japan and New York summer of 2015, which could have brought it to $8 billion in value.
But a report by the Wall Street Journal said that Line, which is very popular in Japan, is having trouble expanding in another location and has scrapped its IPO plan for two consecutive years. The report cited an unknown source saying that Line IPO plans has been delayed until next spring.
According to a spokeswoman from Naver, their company has never canceled IPO plans and that they are under the reviewing process. The timing is something they have to consider as they observe global markets and the performances of their own firm before deciding on going for an IPO.
Line only has 221 million monthly users, which is far behind WhatsApp's 800 million, and WeChat's 600 million.
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