BitWallet, Inc. [J], a company has been running Edy [J] since 2001, will allocate new stocks to a third party at the end of this year, about 3 billion yen of which will be bought by Rakuten.
Rakuten group, centres the giant e-commerce mall Rakuten Ichiba, purchased KC Card, a credit card company in 2005 (renamed to Rakuten KC Credit Card), online bank E-Bank in 2008, Rakuten Securities in 2003.
Edy’s device (boths card and chip in cellphones) have been issued over 50 million, which is bigger than any other digital money service in Japan. 6 out of 7 major convenience stores support Edy. So Edy is successful in terms of how widely to spread among people, but BitWallet has been recording red inc in 9 consecutive fiscal years.
Rakuten’s release [J, pdf]
Edy Chief Strategist Interview [J]