Rakuten Unveils Multi-sig Escrow Services, 30% Discount on Bitcoin Payments

Rakuten.com starts accepting Bitcoin as alternative payment.

Photo: priceminister/Flickr

Photo: priceminister/Flickr

Rakuten, a Japanese electronic commerce and Internet company, has recently announced that it has integrated Bitnet’s payment processing platform to accept Bitcoin as alternative payment.

Starting March 31st shoppers can purchase goods on the US version of the Rakuten.com website via Bitcoin. Next up, the new payment option will appear in Germany and Austria, with other international markets to follow.

Besides, the representatives of Rakuten.com has claimed that shoppers will get $30 off if they spend $100 or more by paying via Bitcoin over the next week.

“These campaigns will continue throughout the course of the year to encourage adoption and repeat usage,” explained a representative of the company.

The integration with Bitnet’s platform will make Rakuten.com one of the most secure e-commerce marketplaces. It will enable shoppers full customer protection, including multi-sig escrow services for high-value items, while using Bitcoin for payment transactions with merchants through Rakuten.com. This move makes Rakuten.com the largest company in the world to take advantage of the enhanced security offered to consumers via multi-signature transactions.

“Bitcoin turned the Internet into a secure, seamless global payment network. By integrating with Bitnet we are now offering consumers the industry standard in secure payments, and our merchants will benefit by receiving guaranteed payments. Both consumers and merchants will have peace of mind when participating in the Rakuten.com online marketplace,” said Fumio Kobayashi, President of Rakuten.com.

Rakuten.com merchants will immediately notice the benefits of using a digital currency: guaranteed payment, instant global reach with no cross-border fees, no price volatility, and no fraud, risk or chargebacks, all for a transaction fees less than that of credit cards.

“At Bitnet we built security into the DNA of our platform. Our approach to security is designed to protect both shoppers and merchants. We’re excited to join with Rakuten.com in offering the most secure and seamless global payment network that can be enjoyed by both merchants and shoppers,” said John McDonnell, Co-Founder & CEO of Bitnet.

Rakuten, Inc., the owner of Racutem.com, was founded by Hiroshi Mikitani in February 1997 in Tokyo, Japan, as MDM, Inc. Rakuten Shopping Mall started operations in May 1997. In June 1999, the company changed its name to Rakuten, Inc. The Japanese word rakuten means optimism. The company’s B2B2C e-commerce platform Rakuten Ichiba is the largest e-commerce site in Japan and among the world’s largest by sales.

In 2013, hundreds of Rakuten customers reported fraudulent credit card charges after making purchases from the website. New Jersey police confirmed at least eight victims who were defrauded of $10,000 and had their social security numbers exposed and used to open accounts at online suppliers. Probably this case has conduced the decision of accepting Bitcoin across the company’s global marketplaces.

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