Rakuten Social Accelerator

In the Rakuten Social Accelerator program, social entrepreneurs leverage the knowledge that Rakuten has acquired while applying a philosophy of empowering people and society through innovation.

About Rakuten Social Accelerator

The Rakuten Social Accelerator is a collaboration program that brings together social entrepreneurs and Rakuten employees to tackle critical issues facing society today using technologies.

How we support social entrepreneurs

We support social entrepreneurs in the process of learning from customers, creating products, developing marketing, resolving social issues, and making organizations stronger with the specific knowledge and resources we have as an internet service provider. Leveraging our technologies, we support entrepreneurs who take on the challenge of finding fundamental solutions to social issues. With the same passion that took entrepreneurs from 0 to 1, we hope to go from 1 to 100 together.

Rakuten can support you at every stage of your business expansion, with unique knowledge and resources.

Application Guidelines

Application requirements

Organization addressing social issues through their business activities (regardless of organization type, but applications from individuals not accepted).
Business or activities already launched, with records of service or program provided to customers/beneficiaries.
Able to visit Rakuten Crimson House (Tokyo) for the final presentation (Jun. 15, 2018), monthly meetings, progress report session (TBD) and Demo Day (Jan. 26, 2019, tentative).

Number of organizations to be collaborated

6 organizations

Program duration

JUL 2, 2018 - JAN 31, 2019 (We have closed the application for 2018)

Method of

Constitution of project teams with selected organizations and Rakuten Group employees, cooperation towards project goals established together


At the beginning of the collaboration, 800,000JPY per organization (to be used for this program)
*Conditions for the 2019 program to be announced in March

From your application to the Demo Day

Participants in 2018 took the following steps to join the program.

MAR 15 – APR 15
Online application

We received about 100 applications.
Thank you to all the organizations which took the time to apply.

Explanation session

The information session was held at Rakuten Crimson House, Tokyo, in front of 62 applicants. The program content was presented and the project team introduced itself.

APR 4 Explanation session

JUN 15
Final selection

After a strict screening of the candidates, 11 organizations were selected early June and were asked to make a final presentation at Rakuten Crimson House

JUN 15 Final selection

JUN 29
Final selection results

The 6 organization joining the Rakuten Social Accelerator program for 2018 were announced (see details below).

JUL 2 – DEC 28
Collaboration Period

During 6 months, about 60 Rakuten employees bring their support in teams and cooperate towards the project goals.
Monthly meetings at Rakuten Crimson House are planned, as well as progress report sessions.

JAN 26, 2019
Demo Day

Collaboration achievements are presented to Rakuten employees and other participants.

2018 Participants

Rakuten Social Accelerator

Rakuten Social Accelerator

Total number of social


Rakuten Social Accelerator

Rakuten Social Accelerator

Total number of employees


Rakuten Social Accelerator

Rakuten Social Accelerator

Total number of hours volunteered


  • Data as of December 31, 2018

6 organizations were selected to collaborate with Rakuten employees.
Here are a few comments from their representatives.


"For 5 years, we have been cultivating and selling flowers to corporates, flowers that make the financial autonomy of people with disabilities a reality. Through our collaboration with Rakuten, we hope to reach individual customers too and see their understanding and empathy grow across the country. And every time people are to buy flowers, we would like them to choose flowers with a story." 
Satoshi Nabe, Representative Officer


"We are very happy to be able to take advantage of Rakuten's technologies and to work with employees with different expertise for our project Hybrid Screening. With the use of technologies, we will make the choice of learning and working possible from anywhere, anytime, an obvious one." 
Makoto Matsuura, Program director

Taberu Magazine

"The extreme aging of the population and the primary sector lacking workforce. With our food publication "Taberu Magazine", we have been highlighting the charms of producers, and we have sparked changes in consumer behaviors. Thanks to your support, we will reinforce our promotion and expand this change in food producers and consumers." 
Atsuhisa Emori, General Manager


"We want to lay the groundwork to turn the hidden charms of local communities into value, together with Rakuten by for instance multiplying our service distribution channels and improving our PR and business model." 
Rina Nagaoka, Representative

After School

"The use of technologies will enrich our program After School that aims to raise children with the society as a whole. We are happy to have the possibility to learn from Rakuten employees and to deliver strong programs to a larger number of children." 
Yuki Shimamura, Director


"We would like to create new sales channels, connecting small merchants and nearby communities in Africa. We hope we can learn from Rakuten Ichiba and Rakuten University to have a bigger impact and in a shorter period of time. I am really looking forward to our collaboration." 
Satoshi Akita, President CEO

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