Viber, Purchased by Rakuten Inc, For $900 Million.
Rakuten is a well known competitor of Yahoo and Amazon.com, when it comes to the online shopping biz in Japan. Where at the moment holds the seat as top dog. With this bold move, they have decided that its finally time to expand their influence around the globe.
Rakuten has been acquiring all sorts of business over the past couple of years, from e-commerce providers from Germany to Brazil, to well know e-book business Kobo and online video provider Wuaki,tv from Spain and Viki of Singapore. They have also made a large investment in Pinterest sometime in 2012.
Presidents Hiroshi Mikitani and founder of Rakuten has expressed that potential of Viber can be used in various ways if done correctly. One of these possibilities is adding games and instant messaging that would appeal for online shoppers who wish to communicate, not only with each other, but with online stores directly.
“This acquisition … will take Rakuten to a different level … Developing this messaging system on our own would have been impossible,” said Mikitani, who is also the company’s chief executive.
The Company has announced its earnings for the fiscal year ending in Dec.31. Its profits where double the amount from 2012 to $427 Million. $5.1 Billion in sale were up to nearly 30 percent from previous years. Its call services and cloud services where very strong last year for smartphones.