E-Commerce Giant Acquires Pick-Up Service

Rakuten announced its acquisition of Silicon Valley startup, Curbside, in a statement on its website on Friday. The Tokyo based e-commerce business claims this new partnership will give its customers more ways to connect to shops and merchants via their mobile devices.

“Curbside is changing the way traditional bricks-and-mortar retailers and restaurants are interacting with their customers,” said Yaz Iida, president of Rakuten.

“Welcoming Curbside to the Rakuten family is all about the consumer, and we are excited to be able to empower consumers with even more ways to enjoy shopping.”

According to Curbside’s CEO and Co-Founder, Jaron Waldman, operating within the Rakuten stable will allow the delivery service to accelerate its platform, offering valuable support to both merchants and shoppers.

“Curbside and Rakuten share the vision that the future of mobile commerce is local, and that extending our platform to merchants for delivering great, low friction commerce experiences in and around their stores is an area of huge opportunity,” he said.

“We couldn’t have found a better partner as we grow our business.”

Founded in 2013, Curbside has developed an app that uses location-based technology to streamline order fulfilment, delivering products to consumers at a pre-arranged time that suits their needs. According to Waldman, consumers can search the inventory of participating retail stores in real-time and then arrange to pick up the items in-store. Retailers will then receive a notification when the customer is arriving to collect their goods.

The businesses omnichannel approach to delivery includes click and collect, same-day delivery, and mobile ordering and store fulfilment capabilities.

The app is currently used by retailers and restaurants, with Waldman claiming it has changed the way consumers connect with local businesses.

No financial details surrounding the acquisition have been made public, however, recent data from Crunchbase suggests the startup has raised approximately $40 to 50 million from investors.

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