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Rakuten adquiere Viber por 900 millones de dólares

Rakuten Inc (4755:Tokyo), una de las compañías de servicios de Internet más grandes del mundo, anunció hoy la adquisición Viber, una compañía pionera de mensajería y VoIP. Rakuten adquirirá Viber por un pago total de 900 millones de dólares. La adquisición representa otro trascendental paso de Rakuten en el espacio del contenido digital. Anteriormente, adquirió Kobo, Wuaki.tv y Viki.

A medida que la gente sigue cambiando las plataformas de contenido tradicional y de comunicación por las aplicaciones móviles, Viber, uno de los servicios de comunicación móvil más popular en todo el mundo, con una base mundial de 300 millones de usuarios registrados y en rápido crecimiento, complementa, a la perfección, la estrategia de Rakuten en el espacio digital. Debido a que Rakuten tiene como objetivo convertirse en la compañía de servicios de Internet n.° 1, esta adquisición le permitirá penetrar en mercados nuevos con múltiples ofertas de contenido digital junto con sus plataformas de servicios financieros y de comercio electrónico.

Rakuten, con 40 servicios diferentes, ha construido uno de los ecosistemas de servicios de Internet más dinámicos y sólidos del mundo, con una base de datos de membresías de identificación unificada en la cual se destaca el programa de recompensas en línea ampliamente popular y exitoso Rakuten Super Points. El enfoque divertido de la mensajería y los servicios VoIP de alta calidad de Viber hacen que la unión con las ofertas de contenido digital de Rakuten sea perfecta. A esto se le suma la filosofía de Rakuten de que “comprar es divertido” (Shopping is Entertainment), la cual sienta las bases para la plataforma en línea diaria más integral y atractiva del mundo. La combinación también le abre la puerta a Viber a posibles y nuevos mercados masivos a través del grupo de Rakuten de 225 millones de miembros, aproximadamente, en todo el mundo.

Hiroshi Mikitani, presidente y director ejecutivo de Rakuten, expresó lo siguiente:

«Me emociona darle la bienvenida a Viber a la familia de Rakuten. Viber ofrece la experiencia de mensajería y VoIP disponible más conveniente y de alta calidad constante. Además, Viber introdujo un genial mercado de etiquetas adhesivas y tiene un gran potencial como plataforma de juegos. En pocas palabras, Viber entiende cómo la genterealmente desea conectarse y ha desarrollado el único servicio que verdaderamente lo ofrece desde todos los aspectos. Esto hace que Viber sea una plataforma total e ideal de conexión de usuarios para Rakuten, ya que nosotros buscamos comprender profundamente al usuario para extendernos hacia un nuevo público a través de nuestro ecosistema dinámico de los servicios de Internet».

Talmon Marco, director general y fundador de Viber, destacó estas sinergias:

«Rakuten es una de las compañías de Internet más importantes del mundo. Es una compañía realmente dominante en su mercado local de Japón, y se ha expandido rápidamente en todo el mundo. Esta combinación presenta una increíble oportunidad para Viber para mejorar nuestro rápido crecimiento de usuarios en mercados nuevos y existentes. El compartir aspiraciones similares con Rakuten, nuestra visión es ser la plataforma de comunicaciones n.° 1, y la unión con esta compañía es un importante paso hacia este objetivo».

La adopción de una aplicación multiplataforma de Viber es, sin duda, impresionante. El negocio demostró un crecimiento significativo al alcanzar los 300 millones de usuarios registrados, un crecimiento de más del 120% en 2013.

Rakuten comenzó su camino hacia el contenido digital mundial en 2012, con la adquisición de Kobo Inc., uno de los servicios de lectura electrónica que más rápido crece en el mundo y que, en la actualidad, ofrece 4 millones de libros, revistas y diarios electrónicos a clientes en 190 países. En 2012, Rakuten adquirió Wuaki.tv, un innovador servicio de streaming (sin interrupciones) y de video a pedido con sede en Europa, el cual, recientemente, comenzó su expansión internacional más allá de España. Este servicio ofrece a los clientes del Reino Unido un catálogo de títulos premier de películas y un modelo de pago híbrido único. Recientemente, en septiembre de 2013, Rakuten adquirió una plataforma de contenido digital sin fronteras, Viki, la cual, en la actualidad, alcanza el 65% de los 30 millones de usuarios mensuales a través de dispositivos móviles.

Asesores

Goldman, Sachs & Co. actuó como asesor financiero exclusivo de Viber. White & Case LLP actuó como asesor legal exclusivo de Viber.

ACERCA DE RAKUTEN, INC.

Rakuten, Inc. (4755:Tokyo) es una de las compañías de servicios de Internet líder del mundo que ofrece una gran variedad de servicios para usuarios y empresas en los siguientes sectores: comercio electrónico, lectura electrónica, viajes, banca, seguros, tarjetas de crédito, dinero electrónico, logística, portales y medios de comunicación, marketing en línea y deportes profesionales. En 2012 y 2013, Rakuten fue calificada en la lista anual de la revista Forbes entre las 10 principales compañías más innovadoras. Rakuten se está expandiendo por todo el mundo y, en la actualidad, opera en Asia, Europa, América y Oceanía. Su sede central está en Tokio. Fue fundada en 1997 y hoy tiene más de 10.000 empleados y personal asociado en todo el mundo. Para obtener más información: http://global.rakuten.com/corp/.

ACERCA DE VIBER

Viber está desarrollada por Viber Media, una compañía pionera de mensajería móvil y VoIP. Viber permite que cualquier persona en el mundo se conecte de forma gratuita. Los usuarios de Viber pueden enviar mensajes de texto, etiquetas adhesivas divertidas, fotos, videos y doodles (imágenes) de manera gratuita, compartir ubicaciones en cualquier lugar del mundo, realizar llamadas de alta definición gratis y comunicarse con la aplicación Push-To-Talk. Con Viber Out, los usuarios pueden hacer llamadas a un bajo costo a cualquier número de teléfono del mundo. Viber está disponible para iPhone®, teléfonos y tablets Android, dispositivos Windows Phone™, Blackberry®, Windows®, Windows 8®, Mac, Linux, Symbian, Nokia S40 y Bada a través de 3G/4G o con conexión WiFi. Con casi 300 millones de usuarios en 193 países, Viber está innovando constantemente con la presentación de nuevas plataformas y la suma de nuevas y divertidas aplicaciones.

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