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  • Online market to link Japanese artisans with Asian buyers


    A new service will let crafters from Japan sell their handmade products to customers in other parts of Asia starting this fall. Japanese e-commerce platform iichi, a subsidiary of marketing gigantic Hakuhodo, will link sites with Pinkoi, a Taiwanese peer that does business on a wider scale in Asia. Pinkoi will buy about 100 million yen ($886,000) in brand-new iichi shares, ending up being the Japanese company's parent.

    In Japan, iichi has some 20,000 sellers providing roughly 400,000 pieces of handmade precious jewelry and housewares. Pinkoi boasts about 2 million users, with a presence in markets such as Taiwan, mainland China and Thailand.

    Upon verification of payments, Pinkoi will inform iichi sellers to ship the goods. The Japanese and Taiwanese partners will share the 10-20 % commission on each sale.

    The 2 business predict the consumer-to-consumer market for handmade products and house wares in Asia will grow to about 500 billion yen in the next 5 to 10 years.

    Fierce competitors in the advertising market are driving Hakuhodo to boost other businesses. Its moms and dad, Hakuhodo DY Holdings, took a 30 % stake in U.S. design studio Ideo last month, also getting rights to acquire a controlling interest in the future.


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