Japanese retail website Rakuten has the potential to compete with the world’s most profitable ecommerce sites, it has been claimed. Author: Joe Elvin
Japanese retail website Rakuten has the potential to compete with the world’s most profitable ecommerce sites, it has been claimed.
Kobo CEO Michael Serbinis, who today sold his entire stake to the website, called Rakuten “the Amazon of Japan” and claimed that his company would massively benefit from the takeover.
In an interview with digitalbookworld.com, he predicted that being able to sell Koko e-readers and tablets would result in huge amounts of money being paid into Rakuten’s international merchant account.
He said: “Two thirds of the book market is outside North America and we’re planning on getting the lion’s share of it as it goes digital.”
Rakuten CEO Hiroshi Makitani remained coy when reacting to suggestions that his company was ready to compete with the likes of Amazon.
In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, he said: “Everyone is very afraid of Amazon, publishers and retailers. We are more of an alliance-orientated company than Amazon. We want to establish relationships with retailers, rather than seeing one company dominating everything.”
He did, however, hint at a price battle with Amazon when it comes to the release of their newly-acquired tablet the Kobo Vox.
Rakuten have already acquired over 50 million customers worldwide and this is set to massively improve after the recent acquisitions of other e-commerce sites such as Play.com, Tradoria.de and Priceminister.com