March 18th, 2014 (Economic Voice Staff). Japanese retail giant Rakuten is today exposed as the world’s biggest online marketplace for elephant ivory and whale meat products.
The new report “Blood e-Commerce: Rakuten’s profits from the slaughter of elephants and whales” – released by the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) in conjunction with Humane Society International (HSI) – reveals that the company’s Japanese website carries more than 28,000 ads for elephant ivory products and some 1,200 whale meat products ads.
Internationally ambitious, the company owns Rakuten Shopping (formerly Buy.com) in the US, Play.com in the UK, PriceMinister in France, shopping sites in Germany, Austria, Brazil and other countries, Canadian e-book reader Kobu and popular chat app Viber, as well as being a major shareholder in Pinterest.
Up to 50,000 African elephants are poached each year in a worsening crisis to satisfy the demand for ivory from Japan and China…