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April 16, 2012
  • Rakuten, Inc.
  • Japan Post Service Co., Ltd.

Rakuten, Japan Post Team Up to Help Domestic EC Merchants
Sell in Foreign Markets

—Companies Aim to Enhance the Expansion of SMEs Overseas—

Rakuten, Inc. (“Rakuten,” Chairman and CEO: Hiroshi Mikitani, Head Office: Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo) and Japan Post Service Co., Ltd. (“Japan Post,” President: Shinichi Nabekura, Head Office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo) have agreed to cooperate with and support each other in helping the merchants of the Internet shopping mall Rakuten Ichiba advance and expand operations overseas.

Rakuten currently offers a service which allows the merchants of Rakuten Ichiba to easily sell to overseas customers over the Internet. Specifically, the system allows merchants to choose which countries and regions they can sell to. For those merchants that face difficulties in using English, Rakuten has prepared templates of order confirmation forms for overseas consumers and payment confirmation forms. Rakuten staff specialists are also offering advice to interested merchants.

Japan Post for its part has constructed a delivery network linking it to postal service operators around the world, and is offering a number of services such as those allowing lightweight products to be sent cheaply in small parcels, the swift delivery of paperwork and cargo, and the high quality and traceable global delivery service Express Mail Service (EMS). In order to simplify shipping to and from overseas, for EMS, Japan Post offers customers packaging services, free envelopes, and the ability to create shipping labels online. From April, Japan Post will offer the International ePacket service that will provide a special, cheaper price compared to EMS for items shipped with one of the special labels created online.

The first partnership between the two companies came about when Rakuten Auction of the Rakuten Group worked with Japan Post for its “Auction Yu-Pack” service that started in September 2011. The agreement signed by the two companies this time will see them deepening their relationship and collaborating to support overseas sales, contributing to the efforts of merchants across Japan to enter new markets.

The precise activities agreed to this time are as follows.

1. Online Shipping Services for International Shipping on Rakuten Sites

Rakuten will employ Japan Post’s* online shipping functions, which will enable Rakuten Ichiba merchants to issue EMS and international paperwork labels (including International ePacket labels). This will simplify the international shipping process for merchants and make it possible to centralize the management of product orders and shipping.

*The online shipping service function may be used by anyone who meets the conditions stipulated by Japan Post.

Please inquire for further details about these usage conditions at a branch office of Japan Post.

2. Cooperation to Expand Opportunities for Overseas Sales Networks

To help support international e-commerce opportunities, Rakuten and Japan Post will leverage sales networks overseas and offer educational seminars on international shipping to Japan-based merchants.

3. Development of Wide-scale, Global Information Dissemination Policies and Mutual Assistance for the Expansion of Overseas Sales

Rakuten and Japan Post will position Rakuten Ichiba as an overseas sales site representing Japan and will aim to attract shoppers around the globe to the site for purchases from Japan. This will be done through mutual support and cooperation toward the expansion of sales overseas by utilizing Japan Post’s overseas networks and through a strategic global communications program.

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