Rakuten, the Japanese online marketplace, is buying US logistics and services company Webgistix – its second logistics investment outside Japan.
The cloud-based Webgistix SmartSuite provides order fulfilment, freight management, and shipment optimization for e-commerce. Over the past twelve years, Webgistix has built a customer base that spans five continents and over 20 countries through its network of company-operated fulfilment centres.
Last year, Rakuten Logistics began offering Rakuten Ichiba Merchants Rakuten Super Logistics, integrated fulfilment service solutions, incoming/outgoing inventory management, storage, packaging, delivery, customer service and various other value-added services.
In November, Rakuten acquired Alpha Direct Services, a French warehouse automation and logistics provider, with the goal of building out the companys e-commerce logistics capabilities across Europe and Japan, and eventually to all its markets globally.
Rakuten says the acquisition of Webgistix continues the momentum behind Rakuten Super Logistics, helping to provide warehouse and fulfilment services to US-based Rakuten.com Shopping merchants while also providing key components to Rakuten globally.
Rakuten offers e-commerce and internet services in over 25 countries and territories. Its B2B2C (business-to-business-to-consumer) model e-commerce site Rakuten Ichibais the largest e-commerce site in Japan and among the world’s largest by sales.
Hiroshi Mikitani, chairman and chief executive officer of Rakuten, said: Every step of the customer path to purchase is important, especially when the process takes place electronically. Webgistix ensures that fulfilment processes are carried out successfully at the most pivotal point of each e-commerce order, where digital services meet physical services.
The experienced management team at Webgistix provides entrepreneurial leadership at the foundation of a growing Americas logistics operation, one that will benefit and support our current and future e-commerce marketplace customers in the Americas, and throughout the world.