August 31, 2020
  • Rakuten, Inc.
  • Tokyu Corporation

Rakuten and Tokyu Establish Joint Venture: Rakuten Tokyu Planning

- Joint venture to offer digital marketing solutions that enhance customer convenience and the shopping experience.

Tokyo, August 31, 2020 - Rakuten, Inc. and Tokyu Corporation today announced that they have established Rakuten Tokyu Planning, Inc., a new joint venture that will provide data marketing solutions to companies in Japan. The company opens for business on September 1, 2020. Through the comprehensive alliance formed by establishing Rakuten Tokyu Planning, the two companies will also explore new digital marketing solutions and other business opportunities.

Rakuten Group Managing Executive Officer Kazuhiko Kasahara will be appointed as Representative Director and CEO of Rakuten Tokyu Planning and Takeshi Hino, General Manager of Marketing and IT Promotion Group in Tokyu's Corporate Planning Headquarters, will become the company’s Representative Director and Vice President.

The recent growth of online shopping, cashless payments and shifts in the economic landscape are transforming the lifestyles and shopping habits of consumers, creating new opportunities for flexible digital services to meet increasingly diverse consumer needs. In the midst of this change, Rakuten is uniquely positioned to provide more than 70 services, including e-commerce and data marketing, and leverage an 100-million strong membership to offer a diverse range of marketing options and solutions.

To complement Rakuten’s online services, Tokyu offers comprehensive offline support to consumers living along its many rail corridors featuring transportation facilities, real estate, retail and hotels. Through its multifaceted connections with its customer base, the company has endeavored to improve the value it adds to their daily lives.

Rakuten and Tokyu aim to foster new purchasing habits and customer experiences through OMO*1 marketing techniques that combine their assets by harnessing the data accumulated by the two companies, strengthening their marketing solutions, applying them to merchandising in Tokyu Group stores and maximizing the ad performance delivered to advertising clients. This will allow stores to stock their shelves according to clearly defined consumer needs and all companies to offer customized product advertising, providing consumers with a highly personalized shopping experience.

Starting in October 2020, the new company will conduct operational improvements at Tokyu Stores and other Tokyu Group locations by optimizing sales promotion data, improving product lineup and adjusting pricing via the application of consumer behavior analysis data from Rakuten and Tokyu. It will also evaluate the effectiveness of these new measures. In addition, trial sales of online advertising based on data from the two companies, as well as trial sales of digital signage combining Rakuten’s digital solutions and Tokyu’s operational expertise, are planned to start in the Futako-Tamagawa area in November.

Moreover, Rakuten and Tokyu are working to strengthen the collaboration built on their operational foundations and further accelerate the growing cashless payment trend in Japan. Starting in September 2020, the two companies will fast-track the adoption of Rakuten Point Card, the Rakuten Group’s loyalty points program, and introduce the app-based Rakuten Pay cashless payment service in the payment systems of Tokyu Group stores.

Through Rakuten Tokyu Planning, Rakuten and Tokyu aim to provide customers with more convenient services and a more satisfying shopping experience by breaking down the barriers between online and offline services along Tokyu-owned rail corridors.

*1 OMO: Online Merges with Offline. A marketing technique that provides consumers with a more efficient shopping experience by breaking down the barriers between online services and offline brick-and-mortar stores.

Overview of Rakuten Tokyu Planning, Inc.

Name: Rakuten Tokyu Planning, Inc.

Date established: July 30, 2020

Investment stakes: Rakuten, Inc. (51%), Tokyu Corporation (49%)

Headquarters: Rakuten Crimson House, 1-14-1 Tamagawa, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo

CEO: Kazuhiko Kasahara

Capital: 20 million yen

Business overview: Provide data marketing solutions that merge online and offline strategies
1. Preliminary research for data marketing businesses
2. Preliminary research for advertising businesses
3. Preliminary research for OMO businesses

Business details:
①Data marketing business 
By harnessing the online data of Rakuten and offline data of Tokyu, this business will enhance its parent companies’ digital marketing and store merchandising in Tokyu Group stores. Starting in October 2020, Rakuten Tokyu Planning will progressively roll out operational enhancements for Tokyu Stores and other Tokyu Group locations using data analysis to overhaul sales promotion, product lineup and price setting adjustments. The company will also evaluate the effectiveness of these measures.

②Advertising business
This business aims to maximize ad performance by utilizing Rakuten’s online data and Tokyu’s offline data. Going forward, Rakuten Tokyu Planning will sell advertising media such as online ads that utilize targeted data from Rakuten and Tokyu, purchasing behavior metrics and digital signage that measure behavior from the initial ad engagement to the final purchase. Sales will mainly target client companies of the Tokyu Group. Trial sales of online ads and digital signage at Futako-Tamagawa Station and the Tokyu Store located inside Futako Tamagawa Rise Shopping Center are planned to start in November 2020.

③OMO business
Going forward, Rakuten and Tokyu will explore opportunities to deliver improved shopping experiences though OMO by combining their online and offline assets.

Overview of the Rakuten Point Card and Rakuten Pay rollout

Since August 2019, Rakuten and Tokyu have introduced Rakuten Point Card at Futako-Tamagawa Tokyu Foodshow, as well as Rakuten Pay at Tokyu Stores and other outlets* operated by the Tokyu Group. With the launch of this joint venture, Rakuten Point Card will be introduced at all Tokyu Stores, and Rakuten Point Card and Rakuten Pay will be introduced in payment systems at Tokyu Group locations.

Schedule for introduction of Rakuten Point Card

Schedule for introduction of Rakuten Pay

*Other outlets: Rakuten Pay is already available at the following locations as of August 31, 2020: Tokyu Store, Precce, Fullel, Tokyu Store Food Station, Tama-plaza Terrace, Minami-machida Grandberry Park, Kohoku Tokyu S.C., Aobadai Tokyu Square, Musashi kosugi Tokyu Square, Gotanda Tokyu Square, Minatomirai Tokyu Square, Korinbo Tokyu Square, Shibuya 109’s Shibuya location, Magnet by Shibuya 109 and Etomo. (Excludes some locations)

For reference: Overview of companies

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

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