Japan's e-commerce giant Rakuten to acquire chat app Viber for US$900M

Rakuten has announced that it will acquire the Israeli chat app co.; news come shortly after Viber’s CEO denied looking at acquisition deals

By Elaine Huang


Japanese e-commerce and internet giant Rakuten today announced that it will acquire Israeli company Viber Media for US$900 million. The news come shortly after Viber’s CEO Talmon Marco denies rumours of the company looking at acquisition deals saying that he has “no knowledge of any of the items mentioned in the story”, according to The Next Web.

With 300 million registered users on Viber, Marco said in a statement issued to Business Wire, “Rakuten is one of the world’s most important internet companies. It is truly dominant in its home market of Japan and has been rapidly expanding globally. This combination presents an amazing opportunity for Viber to enhance our rapid user growth in both, existing and new markets. Sharing similar aspirations with Rakuten, our vision is to be the world’s No.1 communications platform, and our combination with Rakuten is an important step in that direction.”

Hiroshi Mikitani, Chairman and CEO, Rakuten added that Viber has introduced a great sticker market, and has potential as a gaming platform. He said, “Simply put, Viber understands how people actually want to engage and has built the only service that truly delivers on all fronts. This makes Viber the ideal total consumer engagement platform for Rakuten as we seek to bring our deep understanding of the consumer to vast new audiences through our dynamic ecosystem of internet services.”

Read Also: Viki set to be acquired by Rakuten for US$200M

  • Viber
    Viber United States of America Viber is developed by Viber Media, a pioneering mobile messaging and VoIP company. Viber lets everyone in the world connect. Freely. Funding: Not specified Investors: Not specified
  • Rakuten
    Rakuten Japan Rakuten is a leading e-commerce company with more than 18 million customer accounts, focused on providing its customers with a rewarding shopping experience. Funding: 42.4M Venture Round Investors: Intel Capital