Rakuten Purchases The Name Of Miyagi Baseball Stadium For Kobo

NHK reported that Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten, who owns a professional baseball team Tohoku Rakuten Goleden Eagles in the top leagues, purchased the naming right of the home stadium in Sendai, Miyagi prefecture.

Wikipedia: Jet-0

The Miyagi Stadium, which name has been Kleenex Stadium Miyagi, will be changed to Rakuten Kobo Stadium. It must be a move for Rakuten to promote its underdog e-book platform Kobo against its rival Amazon Kindle.

Japan’s 4th Largest Convenience Chain-store To Use Rakuten Super Points

According to Sankei reported [J], Circle-K-Sunkus, the 4th largest convenience chain-store, announced on November 17th that it would replace its own reward points system with e-commerce giant Rakuten’s Rakuten Super Points.

コンビニ Diana mini.

Sales ranking of convenience store chains (2011)

These 4 groups occupied nearly 90% of domestic market.

chains sales(billion yen)
Seven Eleven 3281
Lawson 1826
Family Mart 1535
Circle K Sunkus 980

by each groups’ financial reports via Lawson’s 2012 annual report [J, pdf]

Nisshin Cup Noodle’s New TVCM Cynical About (Presumably) Rakuten

Rakuten’s Englishnization has been causing wide repercussions among Japanese business people. Nisshin’s new commercial film “Survive! Globalization” depicts a Japanese company whose head forces his guys to work in English in cynic tone.

# Nisshin’s special site seems to have its own video player and no official uploaded video are on YouTube. There are some that people took from TV.

The Japanese employees wearing a mix of suits and battle armors in the modern era, ought to charge against their new Westerner boss with English greetings.

The last message “Hara ga Hette wa Ikusa ga Deki nu” means “An army marches on its stomach.”

via ITMedia

Rakuten’s New Grocery Delivery Service Expantion Troubled In Poor Operation

Rakuten Mart, a new online grocery delivery service run by Japan’s giant e-commerce mall company Rakuten, expanded its delivery areas in Greater Tokyo on March 11, is failing to deliver the ordered foods, lots of bad reviews start circulating on the web.

Rakuten’s own review service is getting harsh reviews, many tells that their ordering foods did not arrive during the time-frame they had asked, they got phone call from delivery staff and if they can come late, for example 1 or 2 a.m. after midnight, when the customers denied because it was too late, they never come back even the days following. Some people wrote that they were told re-delivery on 12th and got another no-show again. Many people worried that if Rakuten would charge their credit card even without delivering any.

rakuten-mart-top

Kakaku.com, the largest product review site is receiving lots of complains, too. When Rakuten removed bad reviews on their e-book reader Kobo, many people used Kakaku.com as an alternative place to post their critics, and this time, some may think that the reviews on Rakuten could be modified.

Rakuten Mart issued an apology on their site a few days later, said that they received too many orders than they had expected. Many orders on 11th were undone, but 12th orders were also too much for them so it prevented the re-delivery of the remained items. They promised that they would refund for all the undelivered items, delivery fee, and plus 1,000 Rakuten points (values 1,000 yen) by April 5.

Rakuten Starts Featuring Pinterest On Its Japanese Marketplace And Other Properties

Japan’s biggest e-commerce company Rakuten (US$15 billion market cap, about 80 million user accounts in Japan) has started featuring Pinterest on some of its biggest websites yesterday.

Big R caused a major splash in back in May when it led a massive US$100 million investment in the American startup.

Rakuten CEO Mikitani was quoted as saying that his company has many dormant users with a Rakuten ID who he would like to see re-activated by teaming up with Pinterest.

TechCrunch wrote in May:

It is this ID that will potentially become the lynchpin of a commercial service on Pinterest: “We want to enable our users to pin their own images with our ID,” he says. “Users can click and buy with it, and in the future we can create more new services.” He notes that the “rich, graphic social network” can be used for “so many interesting ideas using the Rakuten ID.” One other area, TechCrunch understands, is for users logged in with Rakuten IDs to pin images and then use those pins to buy items away from Pinterest, on Rakuten’s own Rakuten Ichiba site.

And now this plan is being put into practice.

“Pin it” buttons are now visible in the Rakuten Ichiba virtual mall, Rakuten Travel and Rakuten Recipe, enabling users to send images to their Pinterest pinboards with one click.

The “Pin it” button is actually hard to spot, but don’t be surprised: that’s typical Rakuten design.

What I find weird is that certain pages don’t seem to feature the Pinterest button, i.e. the one for the Kobo Touch reader that was introduced a few days ago and is currently the most popular item (perhaps because it’s just a pre-order):

For beginners, Rakuten also set up a special “How to use Pinterest” page, which can be accessed here.