April 21, 2017
  • Rakuten, Inc.

Rakuten Enters English Education Business with
the Launch of “Rakuten Super English,”
a Comprehensive English Learning Service

– Offering foreign language learning software Lingvist and English learning app,
Maname to users in Japan –

Tokyo, April 21, 2017 - Rakuten, Inc. announced the official launch of “Rakuten Super English,” a comprehensive English learning service utilizing technology to provide a practical English learning and a new style of studying. The launch of Rakuten Super English marks Rakuten’s entry into the English education business.

Rakuten Super English will initially offer the language learning software “Lingvist” provided by Lingvist Technologies OÜ, and the English learning app “Maname” provided by Rakuten Group company ReDucate. Both Lingvist and Maname are designed on algorithms based on adaptive learning*1 concepts, enabling users to effectively acquire English vocabulary. Both can be used on computers, smartphones and tablets, and are also available as dedicated apps for iOS and Android devices.

As English is growing in importance as a common language in global society, many educational institutes, companies and organizations in Japan are working to improve their level of practical English. In 2010, Rakuten made English its official corporate language in order to expand its businesses globally, and the average TOEIC(R)*2 score of its employees is now more than 830 points (Rakuten, Inc. only). Using the experience and know-how cultivated through these initiatives, Rakuten will offer English learners tools and services utilizing technology to support them in their studies and provide a new style of studying through Rakuten Super English. Rakuten is also providing consulting on English proficiency and ways to improve English ability to educational institutions, corporations and other organizations.

Lingvist has been available mainly for users outside Japan to learn multiple languages available and has 600,000 registered users worldwide. Through their partnership with Rakuten, they will provide Japanese users with the software to learn English conversational and business vocabulary. Maname is an app which users can learn English vocabulary studied from elementary school to high school*3. It incorporates a variety of questions on English translation, Japanese translation, intonation, and spelling, and is designed to keep learning fun through gamification*4.

To commemorate the launch of Rakuten Super English, Rakuten will hold a campaign in which users who enter the campaign and register as a paid subscriber for one or both of the services will receive 200 Rakuten Super Points.

Rakuten Super English will work to provide new learning content and enhance the functions of its services to make English learning fun and efficient, and will work to support English learners going forward.


*1 Adaptive learning is a method of promote continued learning and improving the efficiency of learning by automatically optimizing content to a level of difficulty where the user does not feel stress based on their level of understanding and proficiency.

*2 Abbreviation of Test of English for International Communication. TOEIC is a global test that evaluates English communication ability. TOEIC is a registered trademark of Educational Testing Service (ETS).

*3 Corresponds to the English vocabulary common in all middle school textbooks of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology and the Eiken English Proficiency Test Level 2 to 5.

*4 Gamification is the idea of applying elements of gaming to fields other than games such as social activities and services to promote their use.

Service Outline

Name: Rakuten Super English
Launch date: Friday, April 21, 2017
URL: https://english.rakuten.co.jp/

Campaign Outline

Description: Users who enter the campaign and register as a paid subscriber for one or both of the services will receive 200 Rakuten Super Points
URL: https://english.rakuten.co.jp/campaign/open/
Campaign period: Until May 31, 2017 23:59

About Lingvist

Based in Tallinn, the capital of Estonia, Lingvist Technologies OÜ uses technology and computer science to develop products to promote efficient language learning. The company was established with Skype’s co-founder, Jaan Tallinn’s support, after its algorithms attracted attention. Rakuten is an investor in Lingvist, and collaborates with it to develop services for Lingvist in the Japanese market.

About ReDucate
ReDucate, Inc. is a joint venture between Drecom Co., LTD. and Rakuten, Inc. In order to accelerate the growth of the social learning business that Drecom operates, ReDucate collaborates with Rakuten and its ecosystem to provide educational services with high added value. ReDucate aims to realize continuous learning through technology based on the three pillars of gamification, social learning, and adaptive learning and to provide unique learning experiences that books and lectures alone cannot provide.

*Please note that the information contained in press releases is current as of the date of release.

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