Rakuten Acquires 100% Stake in Fits.me

Japan’s #1 e-commerce site has acquired fits.me which helps shoppers to see how clothes fit on them whilst shopping online.

Rakuten Founder and CEO Hiroshi Mikitani said in a release,

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“Not only does the virtual fitting room provide customers with a more realistic shopping experience, it also empowers merchants with the valuable data they need to continually improve their service.”

Rakuten has been compared to Japan’s own version of Amazon with a large variety of products sold at affordable prices.

Fits.me as founded in Estonia and has since been working its way into the U.S. market. In October 2014, the company bought Clothes Horse, which is based in New York.

According to Fashionista,

“The entire Clothes Horse team will stay on through the transition, Fits.me now has a team on the ground in New York.”

Fits.me works for the benefit of the company and the shopper. It provides customers with a firsthand look at what a product will look like, even if they cannot be in person to try it on. While it provides clothing companies with information about their shoppers preferences and helps to create a unique experience for every shopper based off of what they have liked in the past.

The virtual try-on site has worked with brands such as Thomas Pink and QVC in their five years of being in business.

“Fits.me represents both the fun and functionality of shopping online and is a natural complement to our growing portfolio of e-commerce and marketing services,” said Mikitani.

The company creates a virtual 3D model of shopper’s proportions and then they can try on different styles of clothing in different sizes to confirm which they think looks and fits best.

Ratuken’s website sells styles from men’s and women’s clothing and accessories, to kids, children, and women’s maternity wear.

Beyond clothing, the website also has sections for electronics, home & garden, food & drink, beauty & health and sports, outdoors & vehicles.

“Many fashion retailers are still using basic segmentation techniques, but our fit preference insights help them deliver genuine personalization, which improves customer loyalty and life time value. We are excited to join Ratuken, with its leading e-commerce marketplaces and cutting edge marketing services platform Rakuten Marketing, as we build our ambitious product plans and accelerate our planned growth in Europe, the USA and now Asia,” said Fits.me CEO James B. Gamrbell.

Although Rakuten did buy 100 percent of Fits.me, the virtual fitting room will still work independent of Rakuten.

Rakuten is aiming for this acquisition to make for a better shopping experience for their users, as well as a learning experience for the company.

Rakuten has been on a shopping spree of their own, with purchases including OverDrive, an ebook firm at $410 million, the company bought Viber, a messaging app, earlier this year at $900 million, and rumors have been going around that it’s interested in purchasing Popsugar for $580 million.

CEO James Gambrell commented on the acquisition, saying,

“It is the right partner. Rakuten is on the look out for ways to be creative to achieve success. We help connect the dots by providing value to different parts of the organization.”

The purchase was surprising for some, as there were rumors that eBay was looking into purchasing Fits.me as well.

The price of the exchange hasn’t been released, but according to TechCrunch, “one source says ‘investors were happy.’”


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