Rakuten acquires Play.com

Internet service company Rakuten and online retailer Play.com have announced that they have entered into an agreement that will see Rakuten acquire Play.com for about £25 million.


Internet service company Rakuten and online retailer Play.com have announced that they have entered into an agreement that will see Rakuten acquire Play.com for about £25 million.

Internet service company Rakuten and online retailer Play.com have announced that they have entered into an agreement that will see Rakuten acquire Play.com for about £25 million.

Rakuten will purchase 100 per cent of outstanding Play.com stock from its current shareholders.

The acquisition represents a significant step in Rakuten’s continued European and global expansion, and marks the company’s third acquisition in Europe, joining French e-commerce pioneer PriceMinister, acquired in 2010, and the expanding German online shopping mall, Tradoria, which joined the Rakuten in July of this year.  

Rakuten now operates e-commerce businesses in ten countries globally, including Japan.

Hiroshi Mikitani, chairman and CEO of Rakuten, comments: ‘The UK market is one of Europe’s largest and most mature e-commerce markets. Play.com is not only a pioneer in the market, but also one of the UK’s most successful e-commerce businesses.  

‘We aim to leverage our e-commerce strength and experience to further expand and develop Play.com’s business model and channel its loyal user base, merchants, and deep product offerings into Rakuten’s global e-commerce network.’

The UK’s e-commerce industry is the largest in Europe and is expected to exceed $58.0 billion by 2014, by which time it is expected to have 55 million online users.

Todd Cardy

Todd Cardy

Todd was Editor of GrowthBusiness.co.uk between 2010 and 2011 as well as being responsible for publishing our digital and printed magazines focusing on private equity and venture capital. Connect with...

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