Rakuten planning to purchase Asahi Fire & Marine Insurance

Acquisition to boost e-retailer’s financial services portfolio amid fintech push

Rakuten planning to purchase Asahi Fire & Marine Insurance

Insurance News

By Gabriel Olano

Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten is planning to acquire Asahi Fire & Marine Insurance to enlarge its financial services portfolio in a bid diversify its businesses beyond online retail.

Asahi Fire and Marine is quite small compared to other insurers in Japan’s US$76 billion property and casualty insurance industry, but the acquisition will help complete Rakuten’s financial services portfolio, which already includes life insurance, credit cards, and securities trading.

The planned acquisition, which was valued at ¥40 billion to ¥50 billion (US$368 million to US$460 million) was revealed by Nikkei, which reported that Rakuten will use the insurer to help develop data-driven policies as part of its push into financial technology.

Rakuten later confirmed the report in a disclosure to the Tokyo Stock Exchange. However, the e-commerce firm highlighted the fact that it had not revealed the plan to the public.

“It is true that Rakuten Inc. is considering the acquisition, and if there are facts needed to be disclosed, Rakuten Inc. will do so in a timely and appropriate manner,” the company said.

Asahi Fire & Marine Insurance was founded in 1951, and it currently offers motor, home, travel, accident, and other general insurance products. As of March 2017, it had ¥368.9 billion (US$3.39 billion) in assets.

Related stories:
Nippon Life Insurance’s new president to ramp up acquisitions
Rakuten joins Allianz in insurtech investment
Japanese e-commerce titan invests US$10.4m in fintech startup

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