Japanese Retail Giant Rakuten Buys ‘Everybody’s Bitcoin’ Exchange for $2.4 Million

Japanese retail giant Rakuten has announced the acquisition of Everybody’s Bitcoin exchange in a recent press release. Rakuten spent $2.4 million in the exchange purchase, and the press release describes the company’s growing interest in cryptocurrency.

Details of the Acquisition

Japanese retail giant Rakuten expands its “Rakuten Ecosystem” with the recent purchase of Everybody’s Bitcoin exchange. While specifically focused on e-commerce, Rakuten Group offers over 70 auxiliary internet services in areas of travel, digital content, communications, fintech, credit cards, banking, securities, insurance and electronic money. Rakuten Group established Rakuten Blockchain Lab in 2016 and is currently heavily researching blockchain technology.

“We expect that the role of cryptocurrency-based payments in e-commerce, offline retail and in P2P payments will grow in the future,” reads the Rakuten press release. “In order to provide cryptocurrency payment methods smoothly, we believe it is necessary for us to provide a cryptocurrency exchange function, and have been considering entry into the cryptocurrency exchange industry as the Rakuten Group.”

Rakuten reports to be encountering a growing number of customers calling for the provision of cryptocurrency exchange services, which provided further motivation for the acquisition of Everybody’s Bitcoin.

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Everybody’s Bitcoin is a Japan-based cryptocurrency exchange first opened on March 30, 2017. The exchange is currently seeking registration approval to be regulated by the Kanto Local Finance Bureau. Rakuten Group reports that while Everybody’s Bitcoin is currently waiting to be officially registered as a cryptocurrency exchange, it has decided to expand its business under the Rakuten Group to maximize synergies. Rakuten Group elected to acquire Everybody’s Bitcoin as a means of speeding up its own efforts to officially register as an exchange.

“Rakuten Group decided to acquire everybody’s bitcoin shares so that it can realize the early registration as a cryptocurrency exchange and develop cryptocurrency services to customers by combining the know-how of everybody’s bitcoin as a cryptocurrency exchange, and the know-how of Rakuten Group as a provider of various financial services.”

The conclusion of the share transfer agreement between Rakuten and Everybody’s Bitcoin took place on August 31st. Rakuten plans to complete its stock acquisition of Everybody’s Bitcoin by October 1st. Rakuten expects the company’s earnings from the new subsidiary to be negligible. However, the acquisition of licensing granted to Everybody’s Bitcoin is expected to substantially expedite Rakuten’s entry into the cryptocurrency market.

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