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Korean Kakao Is Now Moving Into The Blockchain Market

Samantha Mitchell

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Korean Kakao

The Current Plans

The Korean giant Kakao is now moving into the Blockchain industry it has recently revealed. Dominating the mobile phone market in Korea clearly is not enough for this market leader.

Kakaotalk – the messaging app – owned by Kakao holds a 94% share of the market in Korea. So this is definitely one of the big players.

Kakao has requested one of its subsidiaries – Ground X – to take the lead on the Blockchain project. The platform will be a “partial or gradual decentralization” because not all of the services offered by Kakao can be decentralized. The aim, is therefore, to pull out those services that will not be able to run with Blockchain and continue to manage those as is currently. Those that can be decentralized are then detached and run with Blockchain.

Ground X are taking their time with the project and looking into benefits and how best to move into Blockchain. Hence the statement above showing that not everything will be pulled into Blockchain. The team is looking closely at how best to operate the token side too. Research is being done on how Kakao and the customer can benefit from offering incentives through tokens. It needs to be mutually beneficial for it to work hence the lengthy investigations.

The Competition’s Hot

As is to be expected, other competitors are also moving into the Blockchain industry and especially if this company does enter the global market, competition from the west will be tough. Three competitors that spring to mind are:

• Naver – The Korean company is due to move into the Cryptocurrency world with subsidiary LINE Plus leading the way

• Kik – The North American messenger service is well into development on KIN

• Telegram – Has just managed to bring in $1.7 billion, which is the largest recorded figure, from an ICO

KakaoAll of the above will give Kakao a hard fight. However, Kakao is hot on their tails and completing a full SWOT analysis on all of the above to see where they can learn lessons. However, Kakao’s approach will need to be a little different for the simple reason that the Korean government is not behind ICOs at all and in fact banned them in 2017. Kakao have already confirmed that they will not be raising funds through an ICO.

As a lot of domestic market specific companies are now realizing, the Cryptocurrency industry opens up the whole world to companies that before could never dream of working globally. The impact for Kakao will, therefore, be huge. It is only fitting that this massive company considers all avenues to make sure it enters the Blockchain market on the right foot. It won’t be taking any decisions lightly that is for sure. Kakao’s main focus is making sure that its customers have the best service possible. The company has already stated that its first task is to make sure that services work consistently and that the company can support the many users who will be concurrently logged on. A challenge for many firms now as we move into the more global market.

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