Rakuten is a leading Japanese B2B and B2C e-commerce company, founded by Hiroshi Mikitani in 1997. The company introduced its first internet shopping mall, Rakuten Ichiba, which is now the largest e-commerce site in Japan and one of the biggest internet companies in the world. The company has diversified into electronic money, Internet banking, credit card services, securities, eBooks, online marketing, professional sports, portal media and travel.
Rakuten keeps technological development at the forefront of its activities and provides services in line with its business tenet for “the empowerment of individuals and society through the Internet.” The company is expanding its global outreach by entering foreign markets through acquisitions and joint ventures. Rakuten is also known to be among the world’s most prolific patent buyers. We take a closer look at Rakuten’s patent assets in this week’s report.
Figure 1 shows a significant upward trend after 2010 in the overall number of published patents. Post 2016, there is a decline in the publication trend for Rakuten. The patenting activity peaks in 2014 with 553 publications.
The U.S. and Japan are the favoured filing destinations for Rakuten, as seen in Figure 2. Each jurisdiction accounts for a third of its total active published applications.
Rakuten operates in around 70 businesses spanning across credit cards, travel and tourism, a golf-reservation system, e-ecommerce, insurance and many more. The company owns a calling and messaging app called Viber and has made considerable investments in Lyft, the car-hailing service. It is now launching the Rakuten Mobile Network and is working to build a virtualized, end-to-end cloud-native mobile network. In this connection it plans to use technology from Qualcomm.
Figure 3 is a Topic Map of the top technologies (based on key concepts) covered by Rakuten’s portfolio. In the figure, the size of a bubble corresponds to the total number of patent applications for a technology category. The bubble proximity corresponds to the similarity or “relatedness” of the individual technology categories.
The technologies covered by the CPC code G06Q 30/02 (E-Commerce) displayed an increased year-on-year growth till around 2013, but the growth has tapered off in recent years. About 50% of Rakuten’s active patent portfolio comprises of technologies that can be tagged under ‘Digital Data Processing’.
Figure 4 shows that Rakuten’s portfolio has an average Relecura Star rating of 2.31 out of 5. Typically, a patent with a Relecura Star rating of 3 or more is deemed as one of high-quality. The Relecura Star rating ranks each patent on a scale of five. It is a proprietary composite metric incorporating multiple criteria. The metric combines different technology, business, and litigation related factors. The report lists the top sub-technologies covered by the high-quality patents.
In 2018, Walmart entered into a strategic alliance with Rakuten. Under the terms of the partnership, Walmart will help Rakuten launch an online grocery service in Japan, while in the U.S., Walmart will promote the sales of Rakuten’s Kobo e-readers, e-books, and audiobooks.
The detailed report also includes a competitor analysis for Rakuten. The company’s patent assets are compared across key technology categories against other e-commerce majors like Alibaba, Amazon, Ebay and Walmart.
The dilemma of where, when, and how much to invest in the innovation space is a critical factor...Know More
M&A is a strategic process, aimed at a mutually supportive and complementary association, resulting in a synergized end...Know More
Innovation reaches a dead-end if it cannot be monetized when the innovator fails to trace and reach out...Know More
Management of IP assets is costly and labor-intensive. Relecura offers classifier tools for categorizing and organizing data automatically...Know More
Relecura’s forte is its flexibility and adaptability to address specific problems and close-fitting solutions. The basic problem is that innovators are often not able to identify the industrial and commercial significance of their innovation as due diligence takes long days of analyses, necessitating a deviation from their regular and familiar activities. And it is a tedious iteration process. The latest custom AI capabilities help you assess the commercial value of innovation and technical due diligence can be automated to yield meaningful and immediate results. The repetitive tasks could be automated, and your time and energy could be devoted to strategic missions.
Management of large Innovation data is costly and labor intensive. Relecura offers AI-powered classification tools for categorizing and organizing data automatically and instantly. Automated Categorization against suitably chosen training documents keeps your innovation portfolio updated and lucidly classified, amenable to instant analyses.
Relecura offers fully automated custom AI solutions to track and explore developments in different technology areas. You can stay updated on the latest developments in different companies and technologies of your interest, which facilitates intelligent decision-making.
Competitive intelligence is a prerequisite for strategic decision making. Relecura provides tools to track the innovation and publication dynamics of your competitors, based on which you can prioritize your innovation initiatives and thus hone up your competitive edge.
Relecura uses white space analysis within its product platform known as the TechTracker, an AI-powered tool that provides insights on various technological trends and offers a peep into your competitor’s patent arsenal. Additionally, it helps you keep track of emerging organizations and technologies to help you manage your budgets and investments, optimally.
“Relecura helps us remain innovative by allowing us to see where the competition is playing through the landscaping tools. It lets us see where there are new opportunities and helps us focus in on those areas in an intelligent way.”
“Relecura helps us ride the crest of innovation wave keeping a competitive edge.” It helps us identify the white spaces and where the opportunities are.”
‘Our policy decisions regarding the focus areas of research and investment are being taken based on the insights offered by the custom AI tool, TechTracker, which offers a clear picture about the emerging technologies, companies, and the white spaces on the technology landscape of the key players. This helps us optimize resource utilization and maximize returns,’
‘The Classifier tool, introduced by Relecura, is indeed useful in managing and updating large datasets. After having subscribed to that AI-powered tool, in-house big data management and analyses have become easier and hassle-free.”
“Relecura platform is fueled by the latest technologies, and the tools that the platform hosts make our in-house innovation management smooth and accurate, in addition to being synchronized with the global technology frontline.”
Make faster, better technology decisions with Relecura
Our professional services offer training and support to minimise time-to-value on the Relecura platform and make more timely, confident IP decisions