Line to IPO in 2014

South Korean OTT company LINE is preparing itself for a 2014 IPO with a company valuation of $800m and $1bn, according to Japanese news site Nikkei.

LINE was created by internet content provider NHN Corporation in July 2011 to help Japanese people communicate after the earthquake there. It claimed 200m users in July this year, including 71 per cent penetration among iPhone message app users in Japan, 46 per cent in Hong Kong, along with 44 per cent in Spain. It also has a significant presence in Latin America.

The company has a pretty comprehensive cross-platform offer, spanning Android, iOS, Windows, BlackBerry, Nokia Asha, Windows, Windows 8 and Mac. To get started in the LINE sticker shop, where the company makes most of its revenues, you have to purchase the virtual currency. Prices start at £1.49 for 100 coins and go up to £32.99 for 3,400, plus 1,000 bonus coins. It also uses banner ads in its apps to advertise new stickers for people to buy.

See how it compares to other OTT apps here.