Sold, Play.com snapped up for £25 million

By Gary Johnson - Sep 21, 2011

If you a resident of the UK and regularly purchase media and gadgets online, you would have heard of the online retailer Play.com. The retailers is one of the biggest of its kind in the country, and offers consumers a sometimes cheaper alternative to the shopping malls when purchasing things such as DVDs and games. Now we have news that it has been sold, and Play.com was snapped up for a cool £25 million.

According to TechRadar the online retailer is going to be taken over by a Japanese e-commerce company called Rakuten. The news has been announced this morning with the two companies entering a “definitive agreement”. The takeover by the Japanese company will cost them £25 million in cash or around 3.3 billion yen.

Talking about the deal Chairman and CEO of Rakuten, Hiroshi Mikitani, stated “The UK market is one of Europe’s largest and most mature e-commerce markets.” He added that he felt that Play.com was “a pioneer” in the field, and was a leading UK online business.

Mikitani said his company will use their experience and strength to expand and improve Play.com, and “channel its loyal user base, merchants, and deep product offerings into Rakuten’s global e-commerce network.”

The online retailer currently has around fourteen million registered customers, and since it was first launched in 1998 it has proved to be highly successful. It may have not reached the levels of rival Amazon, but £25 million doesn’t seem a lot to pay for the business. It now offers a variety of products including smartphones and accessories, alongside media content.

Earlier this year the site was the target of hackers, and warned users to change their passwords following online leaks. Are you a customer of Play.com? Do you think prices may go up following the takeover?

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