Saturday, October 26, 2013
Rakuten Won't Waive 'Rent' On Virtual Mall: Mikitani
TOKYO (Nikkei)--Rakuten Inc. (4755) will continue to collect fees from vendors that operate on its e-commerce site despite its main rival's decision to drop such charges, President Hiroshi Mikitani said Friday.
"We spend two to three months to run checks on new sellers and to complete necessary procedures," Mikitani said in a speech at the Japan National Press Club. "Rakuten will not become free."
Yahoo Japan Corp. (4689) has eliminated seller fees on its online shopping site. But Mikitani said that his approach is different than that of Yahoo Japan Chairman Masayoshi Son, who is also head of SoftBank Corp. (9984).
- No free rent, Mikitani says.
His speech was on Japan's growth and competitiveness. Mikitani argued that Japan should take on global rivals by changing business models, work styles and the roles of organizations through aggressive deregulation and the adoption of information technology.
The pro-deregulation business chief blasted the government for backtracking on online sales of over-the-counter drugs. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe had said in June that safety rules will be created to fully allow online sales of OTC drugs, and the government's deregulation panel made a similar recommendation. But faced with stiff opposition from the Health Ministry and lawmakers with close ties to special interest groups, the government balked and added some exceptions.
"Sales rules to ensure safety should be created, regardless of whether sales will be made over the Internet or face-to-face," he said.
(The Nikkei, Oct. 26 morning edition)