Rakuten Inc and Walmart Inc officially opened the first Walmart e-commerce store in Japan, the Walmart Rakuten Ichiba Store, on the Rakuten Ichiba internet shopping mall. The flagship store combines Walmart’s international expertise in delivering high-quality U.S. brand products at great prices and Rakuten’s strengths in online commerce to bring exciting new shopping experiences to Japanese consumers.
The digital Walmart store offers Japanese consumers access to a wide variety of high-quality U.S. branded products, including fashion apparel, outdoor goods and toys. The store will initially offer approximately 1,200 products from a diverse range of prestigious brands. Orders will be fulfilled in the U.S. and air freighted directly to Japanese customers, with a no surprises policy that includes shipping, duties and taxes in the product price.
Walmart said it plans to continue expanding its product range and adding new product categories from its international assortment to the Rakuten Ichiba store to meet customer needs. Walmart’s Japanese subsidiary Seiyu GK will provide customer support for the store, leveraging its years of experience serving local Japanese consumers.
“We are very excited to be working with Walmart to bring a diverse product lineup of American brands at affordable prices to Rakuten Ichiba users in Japan,” commented Shunsuke Yazawa, executive officer and vice president of the marketplace business at Rakuten, Inc. “Through the opening of the Walmart Rakuten Ichiba Store, we hope to make Rakuten Ichiba an even more attractive destination for online shoppers in Japan.”
“Walmart is committed to providing a trusted retail experience in Japan and we are always looking for new ways to better serve consumers here as their lifestyles and needs change,” said Nathan Kring, Senior Vice President, Walmart International. “Through Seiyu, we have an in-depth understanding of this fast-changing market. The carefully curated assortment being offered on our flagship store reflects this insight and our ongoing dedication to Japanese shoppers.”
The digital Walmart store on Rakuten Ichiba is part of a strategic alliance between Walmart and Rakuten announced in January this year. The two companies are leveraging their unique strengths and assets to expand consumer reach and enhance the way customers are served in Japan and the U.S.
In October, Rakuten and Seiyu jointly officially opened the Rakuten Seiyu Netsuper. This new online grocery delivery service leverages Seiyu’s extensive experience in the local fresh food and grocery segments to bring greater convenience to Rakuten’s roughly 99 million-strong membership base.
In addition, Walmart eBooks by Rakuten Kobo was launched in August of this year to give Walmart customers in the U.S. access to a comprehensive catalog of more than 6 million eBooks and audiobooks, as well as the Kobo eReader and a co-branded free reading app for iOS and Android devices.© Japan Today