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Rakuten LinkShare Wraps Up 2012 with Double Digit Growth

Rakuten LinkShare today announced double-digit growth for the fourth quarter of 2012 with strong results in the performance marketing network occurring throughout the holiday shopping season. Specifically, the performance marketing network realized 31 percent year-over-year (YoY) growth in same-store network sales in the last quarter of 2012 and continued to see the greatest growth during the most popular online holiday shopping days:

  • Thanksgiving Day: 54 percent YoY growth.
  • Black Friday: 31 percent year-over-year growth.
  • Cyber Monday: 37 percent year-over-year growth.

Additionally, the Rakuten LinkShare performance marketing network saw 58 percent YoY growth in the week leading up to Christmas as consumers look for the greatest value before making a purchase.

The company addressed its fourth quarter growth and strategic direction for 2013 as part of its annual Rakuten LinkShare Symposium San Francisco being held January 30-31 at the Intercontinental Hotel.

The event brings together leading online advertisers and affiliate marketers in a networking forum designed to empower attendees to create strategies that will maximize their investments in affiliate marketing. To address the needs of more than 400 attendees, Rakuten LinkShare created a flexible yet focused program that allows advertisers, publishers and agencies to learn about the latest e-commerce and consumer trends as they also discuss opportunities in performance marketing.

To make the most of their investment in the channel, a long list of sponsors are highlighted throughout the program as they work to optimize their performance marketing relationships. Silver sponsors include Chase and The Body Shop while bronze sponsors include Golden Feeds, Macy’s and Upromise.

“Rakuten LinkShare Symposium events provide tremendous value in terms of meeting face-to-face with the industry’s leading advertisers so we can develop more effective and successful affiliate marketing strategies,” said Rob Ulveling, vice president of business development, TheFind. “Our meeting schedule is packed throughout the day with a wide range of advertisers and you can’t beat the quality of the brands present.”

This year’s keynote speaker is Forrester Research Senior Analyst Andy Hoar. At the event, Rakuten LinkShare will also spotlight the growing role of retargeting and display and the possibilities for future integration with the affiliate channel as a result of its recent acquisition of MediaForge.

Additional Symposium West highlights include LinkShare University for Advertisers and LinkShare University for Publishers. The one-day curriculum enables advertisers to strengthen their campaigns through training and networking with top publishers and program managers certified in the Rakuten LinkShare network. The program for publishers presents an opportunity to meet with Rakuten LinkShare network development professionals and certified advertiser program managers who provide strategic and tactical advice for driving successful affiliate marketing partnerships.

“Rakuten LinkShare Symposium San Francisco builds on the strength of yet another solid year of double-digit growth for the network as we empower advertisers and publishers to continue to drive sales and earn commissions,” said Yaz Iida, chief executive officer, Rakuten LinkShare. “Performance marketing will play an increasingly critical and strategic role in the overall interactive marketing budget as advertisers invest more in the channel each year due to the strong ROI it delivers to their businesses.”

About Rakuten LinkShare Corporation

Rakuten LinkShare Corporation provides online retailers and other businesses with expert online marketing services and solutions. Rakuten LinkShare’s cost per action (CPA) affiliate network, search marketing services, lead generation campaigns and retargeting solutions can acquire new customers, increase revenue and drive overall results while achieving target return on ad spend. Rakuten LinkShare clients are Fortune 500 and other prominent companies doing business online, including J.C. Penney, 1-800-Flowers.com, American Express, Avon Products, and The Body Shop. The company was founded in 1996 and is headquartered in New York City, with offices in San Francisco, Chicago, Tampa, London, Tokyo and Sydney. For more information, please visit www.linkshare.com.

About Rakuten

Rakuten, Inc. (JASDAQ: 4755), is one of the world’s leading Internet service companies, providing a variety of consumer- and business-focused services including e-commerce, e-reading, travel, banking, securities, credit card, e-money, portal and media, online marketing and professional sports. Selected by Forbes as 7th among the World’s Most Innovative Companies of 2012, Rakuten is expanding globally and currently has operations throughout Asia, Western Europe, and the Americas. Founded in 1997, Rakuten is headquartered in Tokyo, with over 10,000 employees worldwide. For more information, visit http://global.rakuten.com/corp/.

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