After American ecommerce giant Amazon made its India debut in 2013, and Chinese giant Alibaba made strategic investments in the country before announcing to open operations in India, now it’s Japanese ecommerce biggie Rakuten that has its eyes set on India.
The Japanese ecommerce major, famous for its electronics and home products, and often called the Amazon of Japan, already had set up an operations office in Bangalore at the World Trade Centre. This incidentally is building that houses Amazon’s Bangalore office. Now reports have surfaced that the Japanese company has opened a business office, hinting at doing direct business in India.
ET reports that the Rakuten spokesperson declined to comment on this development but said “India is a vibrant growth market and a great source of talent and ideas for us at Rakuten. We are always interested in new global opportunities for growth but we don’t have any comments on developments in India at this time,” in an email.
According to people in the know of the development, many senior executives from Amazon and Flipkart have already started getting poached by Rakuten.
Rakuten is based on Tokyo and apart from its home country operates in only 8 other countries including Brazil, US, UK, Spain amongst others. India will be its first South Asian office.
After the government of India announced allowing 100% FDI in ecommerce marketplaces like Amazon, Flipkart and Snapdeal foreign companies have found a new-found vigour to set shop in the world’s largest growing internet market after China. While local players like Flipkart, Snapdeal and Paytm may not be pleased with the news of another potential foreign rival coming to India, the Indian consumer may have never had it better.