Japanese flea market app Fril to be acquired by Rakuten: Nikkei



See the original story in Japanese.

Tokyo-based Fablic, the Japanese startup behind flea market app Fril, will be acquired by Rakuten for several billion yen (or several tens of million US dollars) and turned into an affiliate, as Nikkei reported early this morning. Combining with its own existing flea market app Rakuma, the e-commerce giant expects to grow its total trading volume up to about 3 billion yen (about $30 million).

Founded in April of 2012, Fablic was born out of the 4th batch of the Open Network Lab accelerator and launched the app in September of the same year. The company introduced the concept of ‘flea market app’ for the first time in Japan. Followed by unveiling their trading volume hitting 500 million yen back in July of 2014, they secured a $10 million funding from Cookpad, Colopl and Jafco in October of said year.

Fablic recently launched a new flea market app focused on trading motorcycles between individuals, called Ride, in an attempt to expand beyond fashion item peer-to-peer trading. While the app has been seeing a good growth, Mercari… another marketplace app from Japan launched in July of 2013… leapt forward and opened up a lead by reaching 10 billion yen (about $100 million) in deals through the platform.

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We’ve contacted Fablic for comment and will update when we hear back.

Translated by Masaru Ikeda
Edited by “Tex” Pomeroy

Fablic founder and CEO Shota Horii