Rakuten Inc, the largest Japanese e-commerce giant, has hired Sachin Dalal, co-founder of India's first e-commerce company Infibeam, to lead its operations in India, reports the Economic Times.
The Tokyo-based company has been keen on the Indian market since 2012.
Dalal reportedly joined the company — nicknamed Japan's Alibaba — in early June and is expected to put together an Indian team to take on giants like Flipkart, Amazon and Snapdeal.
"India is a vibrant growth market and a great source of talent and ideas for us at Rakuten. We are always interested in new global opportunities for growth but we don't have any comments on developments in India at this time," a spokesperson of the firm was quoted as saying in the ET report.
The company had reportedly set up the Rakuten India Development and Operations Center in Bengaluru in 2014 and had drawn mid-level employees from Amazon and Flipkart.
The e-commerce firm's India focus is part of a larger exercise in revamping its global market strategy. The company has downsized its operations in the U.K., Spain and Austria, and is set to focus on the e-Commerce market of France and Germany, according to a statement from the company.
Rakuten will be exploring the Indian retail market, which is already witnessing stiff competition, at a time when ASSOCHAM has predicted its potential revenue growth to reach $38 billion mark, a 67 percent jump over the previous year's revenue.
While the overall prospects look conducive in India, the Japanese firm will open its accounts while India's own Flipkart and Snapdeal have registered a sluggish growth year-on-year, as reported by Mint.
Interestingly Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba had expressed interest in entering the Indian market early this year.