Rakuten Mobile to Acquire DMM's Smartphone Business

Economy

Tokyo, July 9 (Jiji Press)--Rakuten Mobile Inc. said Tuesday that it will acquire online game firm DMM.com's low-cost smartphone and Internet service business on Sept. 1 for about 2.3 billion yen.

The unit of online mall operator Rakuten Inc. <4755> aims to expand its customer base before becoming the fourth mobile phone carrier in Japan in October.

The acquisition is expected to increase the number of Rakuten Mobile subscribers by 240,000 to 2.2 million. Services under the DMM brand will continue after the acquisition.

Low-cost smartphone service operators have been under competitive pressure from larger rivals moving to lower mobile phone rates. Major carrier Softbank Corp. <9434> bought a majority stake in Line Mobile Corp. last year.

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Jiji Press