Rakuten is to open a R&D centre in Paris, trying to develop ways to facilitate e-shopping. At the same time, the Japanese e-tailer wants send a powerful signal that it will focus more on the European market.
Further expansion plan
The new R&D centre will be called the Rakuten Institute of Technology and will mainly focus on the development of the trading platform to allow web shops to trade safely on the internet, both nationally and internationally. Paris will host the new centre with room for 20 employees, following two other R&D centres in New York and Japan. The latter is also its biggest with 40 employees.
The French team will tackle fraud detection, image processing, ‘user interfaces’ and the online-offline transition, according to a Rakuten press release, but more importantly, it gives a signal that Rakutan wants to invest in and expand into the European market.
Rakuten’s ecommerce platform is Japan’s largest and one of the largest worldwide on the basis of turnover, as it had a 2012 turnover of some 3.38 billion euro.