The deal is expected to be worth $200m
Japanese internet firm Rakutento has signed an agreement to acquire the Foreign-Language video streaming platform Viki, as part of its efforts to spread out its platforms for distributing content.
Claimed to be the Amazon of Japan due to its dominance in the country’s e-commerce market, Rakuten generates about $4bn in annual revenue through its online shopping site.
Rakuten chairman and CEO Hiroshi Mikitani said that Viki has an entirely unique approach to video streaming that is truly global and truly engaging.
"Their smart and creative approach to bringing popular content to global audiences will enable Rakuten to move quickly into new markets around the world," Mikitani said.
"There are a striking number of synergies and shared philosophies between our two businesses; the Viki model is built on a powerful community, focused on removing the language barriers that have traditionally trapped great content inside geographical borders."
Viki is planning to bridge the language gap of domestic-language programming and aims to develop a global audience for non-English shows.
The video streamiung platform has also raised $25m from investors including Greylock Partners, Andreessen Horowitz, Charles River Ventures, Neoteny Labs, SK Telecom, SingTel, BBC Worldwide and 500 Startups.
Rakuteno also acquired Kobo in 2012, in addition to the acquisition of the US online retailer Buy.com for $250m and French Internet marketplace PriceMinister for €200m.