November 6, 2023
  • Rakuten Group, Inc.

Rakuten Announces Winners of Rakuten Technology Excellence Awards 2023

Tokyo, November 6, 2023 - Rakuten Group, Inc. today announced the winners of the Rakuten Technology Excellence Awards 2023. The awards will be presented to the winners at Rakuten Technology Conference 2023, which will be held on November 18, 2023. Rakuten Technology Conference is an annual technology event organized by Rakuten that aims to bring together tech leaders, engineers, researchers and tech enthusiasts from around the world to think about the future possibilities of technology.

The Rakuten Technology Excellence Awards are awarded to individuals or organizations which have contributed to innovation in society through advanced technologies. This year, in the 14th presentation of the awards, three “Excellence Awards” will be presented based on the theme of “AI-nization.”

Winners of the Rakuten Technology Excellence Awards 2023


LLM-jp is a research and development group for large language models (LLM) established in Japan. Based on the call from Sadao Kurohashi, Director General of the National Institute of Informatics, the group held its first study meeting on May 15, 2023.

LLM-jp aims to establish computational infrastructure and LLM construction infrastructure, including engineering and other human resources, to create an environment for testing for domestic and overseas researchers. The group comprises over 600 participants, including researchers from universities and corporations. Thanks to the contributions of LLM-jp, the construction of multiple Japanese LLMs is underway.

Based on these achievements, Rakuten presents LLM-jp with an Excellence Award.

rinna Co., Ltd.

rinna Co., Ltd. is an AI startup working on research and development of Open Domain Conversational Technology.

In July 2023, rinna developed a 4-billion parameter Japanese and English bilingual LLM and released it as open-source software, contributing to the enhancement of LLM usage in Japan. In addition, rinna also contributes to the academic field through publishing papers at major conferences such as ACL 2023, which is the leading conference on language processing, and INTERSPEECH 2023, the leading conference on spoken language processing.

Based on these achievements, Rakuten presents rinna Co., Ltd. with an Excellence Award.

Asuka Nakajima

Asuka Nakajima has been researching cyber security for more than 10 years, with her research recognized at BlackHat Briefings, a renowned global security industry conference. Nakajima has further contributed as a review board member for the conference, actively promoting security research globally by reviewing around 1,000 submissions.

Nakajima also founded Japan’s first information security community for women, CTF for GIRLS, thereby enhancing diversity in the security community. In addition, she actively contributes to the advancement of cyber security through her involvement in research and development of endpoint security with Elastic, a leading platform for search-powered solutions.

Based on these achievements, Rakuten presents Asuka Nakajima with an Excellence Award.

About the Excellence Awards
The Excellence Awards are presented to individuals or organizations in various industries and fields which have promoted the advancement of society through technology.

Selection Committee
Chairman: Mickey Mikitani, Chairman and CEO, Rakuten Group, Inc.
Committee members:
Yasufumi Hirai, Group Executive Vice President, Chief of Staff to the CEO, Rakuten Group, Inc.
Akihito Kurozumi, Group Senior Managing Executive Officer, CIO (Chief Information Officer) & CTO (Chief Technology Officer), Rakuten Group, Inc.
Ting Cai, Group Senior Managing Executive Officer, CDO (Chief Data Officer), Group Senior Managing Executive Officer of Technology Services Division, Rakuten Group, Inc.
Members of the Rakuten Technology Conference Team

Through the annual awards, Rakuten aims to support individuals and organizations that strive to achieve revolutionary advancements in technology and promote innovation.

About Rakuten Technology Conference 2023
Date and time: November 18, 2023 (Saturday), 10:00-18:00 JST
Venue: Rakuten Crimson House, 1-14-1 Tamagawa, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo
Event organizer: Rakuten Group, Inc.
Official site:
Event registration page:

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

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