Friday, April 4, 2014

Rakuten Online Shopping Targets Growth with Expansion of Fashion & Accessories Category

Recent Rakuten Super Sale Validates Fashion Focus for Japan-based Online Shopping Giant

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 4 April 2014 – Rakuten, one of the world’s largest Internet service companies and owner of Malaysian marketplace Rakuten Online Shopping, is set to attract more clicks this year with the expansion of its fashion and accessories category. Today, the brand’s number of fashion merchants has multiplied by 8 times since its foray into the local market two years ago.

This growth reflects the increasing demand by Malaysian shoppers, especially for fashion items. Over the last two years, Rakuten has seen a steady 25% increase in member sign-ups each month, and a 400% increase in the number of orders received. The brand aims to continue achieving similar growth this year.

“According to the Malaysia E-Commerce Index which was released in August last year, clothing, accessories and jewellery accounted for 59.5% of the items purchased online. This made fashion and accessories the top-ranking category, compared to health and beauty (39.9%) and consumer electronics (34.7%). With Internet users also expected to increase to 25 million next year, we anticipate 2014 as a year of growth for us and our dedicated merchants,” said Masaya Ueno, President & CEO of Rakuten Online Shopping.

Boasting almost 18,000 products from over 80 merchants in the fashion and accessories category, consumers can enjoy an exciting line-up of clothing and fashion accessories, including bags, shoes and jewellery for women and men, from some of Malaysia’s top and up-and-coming retailers on Rakuten Online Shopping, including Toki Choi, Poh Kong, Afraldo Online Fashion, Bagstation, Crocs, and more.

The expansion of its fashion and accessories category is also in line with the brand’s second-ever Rakuten Super Sale campaign, which is set to take place in April.

“Empowering merchants and consumers is at the heart of our business. Over the past year, our team has worked tirelessly with our merchants to help them expand their reach through multichannel offerings. Our ambition is to create a global e-commerce platform, so that merchants and consumers can sell and shop from around the world.” said Masaya.

Rakuten's strength lies in its unique B2B2C model, which provides SMEs as well as larger-scale merchants with a global platform to expand their sales and visibility. The company does not only provide the training and knowledge to run a profitable online business, but encourages merchants and customers to form closer relationships beyond that of a seller and buyer. With the B2B2C model, merchants can build online storefronts on Rakuten and sell directly to consumers. Through this model Rakuten is also able to empower merchants with the e-commerce platform, tools and know-how they need to run successful online businesses while providing consumers with a new and interactive online shopping experience.

As Rakuten continues to strengthen its foothold in Malaysia, the brand will focus on bringing in more merchants in the fashion and accessories category as well as broadening its offerings in other key categories such as beauty & healthcare, IT & electronics, toys & games, kids, baby and maternity products.

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