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Japan's Nomura, Line seal agreement for net-based securities brokerage

Tokyo

NOMURA Holdings Inc has agreed to set up an Internet-focused securities brokerage with messaging app operator Line Corp, part of a push to leverage the app's wide user base to recruit a younger generation of clients.

Nomura - Japan's biggest brokerage and investment banking group - and Line said in a joint statement on Friday that the venture, Line Securities Corporation, would offer brokerage services and investment advice through the messaging platform.

Nomura will own 49 per cent of the venture, with Line, controlled by South Korea's Naver Corp, holding the remaining 51 per cent. Capital of 10 billion yen (S$122.4 million) is planned, the firms said, adding that it was undecided when it will begin business.

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The move marks Nomura's latest effort to tap a new generation of customers as its client base ages. It said in March that it would invest about 1.6 billion yen in a fintech firm offering fi-nancial robo-advisory services.

With 75 million monthly active users, Line's app - available on both portable devices and desktop computers - is ubiquitous in Japan and especially popular with younger, tech-savvy people.

It already provides financial services such as loans and insurance, and in January said that it planned to launch a cryptocurrency trading platform.

The companies said that Nomura's financial services prowess would enable Line Securities to offer new services to Line customers looking to build up financial assets.

The firms said that they did not expect the joint venture agreement to have a material impact on their financial results. REUTERS

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