According to the report on Naver, Samsung Securities (“SS”) seems the most likely to lead Kakao’s IPO. SS has sold 250,000 self-owned shares to private clients. Prices per share are stated at KRW 79,560 (about US$75), with the total value at KRW 19.9 billion (US$18.7 million).
If Kakao does enter the IPO market next year, it is still US$23 billion short of beating LINE, an Asian competitor. LINE is planning to IPO globally at US$28 billion. Currently, KakaoTalk alone has a total of more than 100 million users (as of July 2013). WeChat and LINE, on the other hand, already crossed 200 million users (as of late-July 2013).