A group of Japan’s biggest crypto traders are getting ready to create new NFT and blockchain moves, with Rakuten, Line and Coincheck preparing new projects.
Rakuten operates one of the country’s biggest e-commerce platforms along with an e-pay service, a crypto exchange and a streaming service. The company recently announced, in a press release, that it will be launching an NFT business unit next year (2022). The Rakuten NFT will focus on sports and entertainment offerings and will make its debut in spring 2022.
The company already has a number of sports relations. They sponsor a football team in the Japanese leagues and are the current shirt sponsor of football giant, FC Barcelona. It also oversees a number of entertainment services including Rakuten TV.
Rakuten has said that their new business arm would combine a traditional NFT marketplace with a sales platform and promised traders the ability to issue and distribute NFTs on the platform without having to develop their own technology. The company has also stated that NFTs could be bought on the site with Rakuten points.
Rakuten also seems to be searching for new crypto talent. A few weeks ago, a LinkedIn job posting indicated that the firm is looking to hire new staff for their blockchain lab in Tokyo. Similarly, Line has also posted a job advertisement stating that it is looking to increase its blockchain team.
Line is a chat app, used by 84 million smartphone users in Japan. The app is currently looking for developers to work in Tokyo on the Line blockchain mainnet, smart contracts, consensus algorithms and Line’s token economy plans. On Tuesday, it was announced that Line will be launching its very own NFT collection Line Friends NFT– a collaboration with the company’s popular emoji series.
Line was founded by tech-giant Naver but has recently merged with Yahoo Japan.
One of Japan’s biggest crypto exchanges owned by Monex Group, Coincheck, has recently announced that it will launch an NFT collaboration with fashion brands. One of the brands that the crypto exchange will be working with, Tomo Koizumi, has created looks for the likes of Lady Gaga and Japanese singer Misia- this dress was worn in the opening ceremony of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Coincheck has recently released its new NFT marketplace that will provide platforms for J-pop, manga, anime, drama and sports-themed cultural content.
While these moves are certainly big, only two weeks ago, Japan’s biggest crypto exchange Liquid was hit by hackers who stole nearly $100 million worth of cryptocurrency. Liquid operates in over 100 countries around the world. Could it be that Japanese crypto giants are gearing up to create platforms that are more reliable for their traders to use to protect their finances?