Rakuten expands B2B services with Aquafadas

By Tuesday March 28th, 2017All, Press release

Rakuten executives Yasufumi Hirai and Koichiro Takahara join Aquafadas to lead expansion initiatives and leverage synergies with parent company


Montpellier, Monday, March 20th, 2017

Aquafadas, leader in digital publishing and app creation, part of French Tech, today announced they were becoming a major subsidiary of Rakuten, a global internet services company and operator of Japan’s leading online shopping mall, and appointing Yasufumi Hirai as Chairman and Koichiro Takahara as CEO. The new team will work closely with Aquafadas senior managers Thomas Ribreau (new CTO) and Florian Lemoine (new CIO).


The new leadership will focus on expanding Aquafadas Mobile Apps and Digital Publishing System as a central aggregator of various Rakuten B2B and B2C services. These solutions will enable Rakuten to develop innovative tools for corporations who want to accelerate their business with digital systems. Becoming a major subsidiary of the Rakuten Group has a significant strategic importance for Aquafadas in opening new B2B opportunities.


Yasufumi Hirai is Executive Vice President, CIO/CISO (Chief Information Security Officer) and Media & Communications Company President at Rakuten Group. Prior to joining Rakuten, he has held positions at Cisco Systems G.K, Microsoft Co., Ltd. (currently Microsoft Japan Co., Ltd) and IBM Japan Ltd.

«I am very impressed with the technological solutions built by Aquafadas as well as the quality, creativity and agility of their teams. My goal is to leverage Aquafadas expertise within the Rakuten Group and expand their international presence.» Yasufumi Hirai



Koichiro Takahara is Executive Vice President at Overdrive, a Rakuten Company, and part of Rakuten Global Digital Contents & Communications. Prior to joining Rakuten, he served as Business Planning & Operations Director at SAP. In recent years he has been working closely with Aquafadas as their representative within the Rakuten Group.

«My ambition for Aquafadas is to boost their technology by creating a deep partnership between the French team and the Rakuten Technology Division. I will focus on developing new projects based on Aquafadas technology and strengthening sales dynamics. Aquafadas tools are perfect accelerators of the digital transformation of corporations.» Koichiro Takahara


Claudia Zimmer and Matthieu Kopp, the co-founders of Aquafadas, will step down and take the role of advisors overseeing the transition with Koichiro Takahara and Thomas Ribreau.


«My objective was to create a closer relationship with the Rakuten Group to boost the growth of Aquafadas, the company Matthieu Kopp and I created 10 years ago. I’m looking forward to new exciting projects as a result of the new closer partnership.» Claudia Zimmer


«The Aquafadas team and I would like to thank Claudia Zimmer and Matthieu Kopp for their leadership, creativity, help in shaping talents as well as their role in creating this new exciting partnership with the Rakuten Group.» Koichiro Takahara