Since its establishment, Yahoo! Japan has operated under the slogan of ‘users first’, placing the needs of consumers at the forefront of its philosophy. Through the provision of a wide variety of IT services for desktop and mobile, Yahoo! Japan acts as an engine for problem solving; recognising the social importance, convenience, public nature and potential of the internet and creating innovative solutions to consumer requirements with ever more enhanced services. The portal site continues to grow rapidly, introducing new added value services including news aggregation sites such as Yahoo! News and the online auction site YAHUOKU!, plus a range of further convenient problem-solving services for both individual and corporate users.
Yahoo! Japan with SoftBank Capital
Yahoo! Japan is part of SoftBank Capital, which in turn is a part of the wider SoftBank Corp, a global leader in internet, broadband, fixed-line telecommunications and mobile communications that is headquartered in Tokyo. SoftBank Capital has a number of technology companies in its portfolio, providing each with the opportunity to gain strategic advantage within the Asian marketplace.
A new fund from SoftBank Capital, the SoftBank PrinceVille Fund, brings even more opportunity to the table. The $250 million fund will focus on bringing into the Asian market those innovative technology companies seeking expansion and offering products and services tailored to the growing mobile and technology market in Japan, China and Korea. Board member of the SoftBank PrinceVille Investments Mukesh Valabhji, a prominent investor in a wide variety of industries worldwide, is excited by this change of direction for SoftBank Capital, which has previously focused the majority of its funding on seed businesses. You can read an online profile of Mukesh Valabhji to find out more about the fund and other global investment opportunities.
SoftBank Capital has emphasised the fact that by affiliation with companies such as Yahoo! Japan, these businesses seeking expansion through the PrinceVille fund will be able to access local knowledge and additional strategic value to accelerate their market presence. It is expected that between 12 and 15 companies will be allocated $10 to $20 million from the fund, as well as gaining strategic advice and assistance from the wider SoftBank Group.
Yahoo! Japan acts primarily as an engine for solving problems through the internet. With the spread of smartphone and tablet usage, this potential for problem solving is now far greater than ever before, leaving Yahoo! Japan ideally placed to address the needs of business and individual customers anywhere and at any time. The role of Yahoo! Japan within society is therefore becoming increasingly important, creating the need for innovative new and enhanced services.
Yahoo! Japan is rising to the challenge in a number of ways, working to solve problems for ecommerce businesses, consumers and all other users in the fastest and most convenient way possible. Asia today represents a mature mobile market, with rising incomes across the board seeing consumers willing and able to spend on advanced technology. Businesses such as Yahoo! Japan, which offer vast problem-solving services to add value and convenience, are at the forefront of those companies beginning to monetise the millions of new customers in the Asian region.
Revitalising Ecommerce and Online Advertising
Over the past few years big changes have been made at Yahoo! Japan, revitalising both ecommerce and online advertising. From October 2013, Yahoo! Japan removed all monthly tenant fees in a new initiative for major services such as auctions and online shopping (YAHUOKU! and Yahoo! Shopping, for example). The results of this saw ten-fold growth in online shops; by September 2014 there were 190,000 shops and an expanded line-up of merchandise with more than 100 million items available. Under this new direction Yahoo! Japan expects to see further growth in the ecommerce sector as we move forward in 2015.
Since the end of 2013 a new strategy has also been put into place for online advertising. Yahoo! Japan is now able to utilise both the latest advertising and marketing technologies and big data to provide a more comprehensive solution to multi-device requirements and to the diversification of the needs of advertisers. Since introducing the new strategy, Yahoo! Japan has seen growth across the board of both advertising displays and advertising revenue, driven primarily by increased smartphone usage and also through improvements in matching accuracy and other factors. Businesses are able to access the benefits of the new strategy through Yahoo! Japan Display Ad Network (YDN).