JD.com, one of China’s largest retailer, and Rakuten, Inc., a global innovation company in e-commerce, have signed an agreement that will see JD.com’s drones and autonomous delivery robots utilised in Rakuten’s unmanned delivery solutions in Japan.
Under the agreement, JD.com will combine its expertise in developing drones and autonomous delivery robots with Rakuten’s expertise in drone delivery service operations in Japan, such as its dedicated shopping apps. The two companies will collaborate on Rakuten’s line-up of unmanned delivery services to suit a wide range of applications and situations.
Rakuten launched its Rakuten Drone delivery service in 2016, and has gained experience through providing delivery services and trials in collaboration with corporate partners and local governments. In 2018, its first delivery trial was conducted using a combination of drones and autonomous delivery robots, a step toward solving the last mile challenge for the logistics sector in Japan.