Rakuten buys shopping site Ebates for $1 billion

Online mall aims for world's largest selection of goods

Japanese online shopping giant Rakuten has added another company to its cart with the acquisition of Ebates, a cash-back shopping website.

The US$1 billion cash deal will give Rakuten 100 percent of Ebates voting stock.

Founded in 1999, Ebates is a membership-based shopping portal headquartered in San Francisco that offers rebates and coupons from other large retailers such as Amazon.com and Walmart.

Members can get deals on everything from patio furniture to hotel accommodation.

"Rakuten has the Super Points loyalty program, which is one of the most popular loyalty programs in Japan," a spokesman for Rakuten wrote in an email. "Ebates is the largest online cash-back loyalty program in North America. Together, they will allow Rakuten and Ebates to offer their members the most empowering and rewarding shopping experience globally."

The partnership will give customers the world's largest selection of products in a broad range of categories, he added.

The purchase highlights Rakuten's recent acquisitions spree, which included messaging app Viber , gobbled up for $900 million in February.

Rakuten earlier picked up Canada's ebook platform Kobo, Spanish video service Wuaki.tv, digital content platform Viki, logistics firm Webgistix and Buy.com.

Led by founder and CEO Hiroshi Mikitani, Rakuten has long seen Amazon.com as a rival. It been trying to diversify its revenue streams so that it relies less on Japan, branching out overseas and into a variety of industries including travel, banking, credit cards and professional sports.

In July, it announced it was acquiring an 18 percent stake in low-cost airline AirAsia Japan.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Internet-based applications and servicesRakuteninternet

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Tim Hornyak

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles


GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy


First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni


For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell


The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi


The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott


My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?