Director of Channel Partnerships - Rakuten

Rakuten, Inc. is the largest e-commerce company in Japan, and third largest e-commerce marketplace worldwide. We seek to empower merchants to deliver Omotenashi, a hospitality mindset, which helps sellers create lasting relationships with customers. Along with the global marketplaces, Rakuten supports an ever expanding list of acquisitions and strategic investments in disruptive industries and growing markets.

At Rakuten, we offer competitive salaries, benefits, annual bonuses, a stocked kitchen and a dynamic office environment. We love investing in our people and when it comes down to it, we think our entire team is pretty awesome. As a technology focused company, we understand the importance of an energizing atmosphere that promotes collaboration and innovation.

We are looking for a tenacious, systems-driving Director of Channel Partnerships who has his/her best work ahead on our founding team. The position is located in the Bay Area with moderate travel to New York and Tokyo. This person will be reporting to the SVP of Sales. The mission is to take a new global ads & services brand "Rakuten Interactive" from inception to industry prominence with ingenious indirect sales and partner GTM programs.

The candidate will rapidly build a team to drive global revenue and TAV with system integrators, vendors, VARs, ISVs, distributors, and referral partners. The big idea is to own an enviable partnership network among the heavyweights (Adobe, Deloitte, Box, HPE, Orcacle, IBM). The bigger idea is to provide seamless integration/onboarding with the best SaaS Reseller, Service Provider, System Integrator, and Referral programs - and become a fixture on the Forrester Wave and Gartner's Magic Quadrant.

Reporting to the SVP of Sales with a high degree of freedom (responsibility) and geography (travel), the partnership guru will manage an agile team of channel managers and have dotted line management of field-based sales resources.


  • Strategy: define and operationalize 1-year and 3-year channel strategy
  • Speed: recruit, onboard, and nurture long term alliances whilst coordinating pre-sales: proposals, analyses, workshops
  • Numbers: channel pricing, partner contracts, renewals, discounting, incentives, and partners' programmatic resources
  • Marketing: Create tiered partner alliance & OEM programs, made strategic in partner's portfolio. Joint event-planning, presentation to prospects
  • Winning: Drive partner led leads (pipeline) and partner led revenue (ARR)
Essential duties and responsibilities may include, but are not limited to:

  • Consolidate productized solutions (BI, analytics, martech) and value-up across various alliances and partnership networks, such as Global System Integrators (Deloitte, Accenture, KPMG, Infosys, TCS) and technology partners (Content API, embed, integrations)
  • Create Rakuten Interactive Partnership Network and its premium tiers
  • Land on both Forrester Wave and Gartner Magic Quadrant as a service provider
  • Shake on global alliances across cloud/martech technology, implementation, and integration areas
  • Develop value proposition and collateral to educate ecosystem partners and customers
  • Present frequently on speaking circuits: Dreamforce, Slush, consulting conferences
  • Channel partner forecasts and funnel (Salesforce, Velocity, QuoteEdge)
  • Ensure partner pipeline is accurate and achieves double-digit quarterly and yearly targets
  • Weekly calls/meetings with partner orgs to drive pipeline and alliance initiatives


  • 7-10+ years channel partnerships and alliances at mid to growth stage startup (SaaS, cloud, ad-tech), blue-chip technology firm, fast-moving F100 divisions
  • Platform evangelist on sales or development side
  • Exceptionally familiar with both Cloud/SaaS subscription model and agency/managed services model
  • Ideal candidates from: Oracle, Salesforce, Adobe, SAP, IBM, HPE, Box, and leading cloud solutions

Team Fit:

  • Early-stage DNA: startup and growth company experience, weathered for rapid rates of change
  • Hunter/gatherer/builder skillset and prioritization
  • Set goals, objectives, KPIs independently as leader with no babysitting
  • Smart, creative, humble, hungry, funny, and nice

Rakuten, Inc. is top 3 in global e-commerce and the largest Internet services company in Japan with $7B global turnover, 12,000 employees,

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