The mobile communications app Viber has been acquired by Ratuken, the Japanese version of Amazon, for $900 million ( £540 million).
Viber is one of Skype’s biggest rivals with over 300 million users worldwide. The app was the first to introduce 3G VoIP on the iPhone and allows users to call all any land-line or mobile phone, send messages and even push-to-talk.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Viber’s global user base helped draw Rakuten, which is trying to expand its business interests beyond Japan. It also recently purchased a large stake in Pinterest and bought e-reader maker Kobo.
Rakuten’s CEO confirmed that Viber “perfectly compliments” its goals and said the acquisition “will enable it to penetrate new markets with multiple digital content offerings.”