Panasonic is prepping an Android 2.2-powered e-book reader/tablet hybrid [JP] that’s specifically designed for the Japanese market. The device will offer e-books through a store set up by Rakuten, the country’s biggest e-commerce company, with the initial line-up including a total of at least 10,000 titles. → Read More
Rakuten, Japan’s biggest e-commerce company ($10 billion market cap), and Chinese search leader Baidu have today opened a new online shopping mall in China. Dubbed Lekutian (“Happy Cool Day” in Chinese), the launch of the site was announced back in January. Both web powerhouses will invest US$50 million over the next three years in their joint venture. → Read More
Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten this morning announced that it is buying France’s e-commerce website operator PriceMinister for about €200 million (roughly $250 million), reports the Wall Street Journal.
When I covered Rakuten back in July last year, I called it “the biggest e-commerce site you never heard of”. And in fact, the eponymous Japanese company behind the B2B2C market place (which is currently used by over 33,000 Japanese merchants) generated less than 10% of total sales overseas at that time. But that’s about to change very soon.
Chinese search leader Baidu and Rakuten, Japan’s largest e-commerce player, have announced an agreement to jointly invest US$50 million over three years in a joint venture to build a huge online ‘B2B2C’ shopping mall for Chinese Internet users.
Under the terms of the agreement, Rakuten will become majority shareholder of the new, yet to be named joint venture (51%) with Baidu owning the remaining… → Read More
The term “e-commerce” still lacks a universally valid definition, but even if you just bundle B2B and B2C transactions under it, it’s a multi-trillion dollar business globally. Last year, Nielsen found [PDF] 86% of the global web population made an online purchase already (North America: 92%). For the US alone, B2C sales are expected to grow from $130 billion this year to over $200 billion by 2013… → Read More