The Indonesian technology company Go-Jek is the first “unicorn company” in Indonesia which has just acquired the Bitcoin exchange Coins.ph in the Philippines. Unincorporated private start-up companies are worth more than $ 1 billion. It is reported that Go-Jek is hovering around $ 9 billion.
Go-Jeck turning to the fintech industry
So far, the company has focused on passenger transport and logistics. Now, however, Go-Jek is also turning to the fintech industry. For example, Go-Jek has announced that it has acquired the majority interest in the Philippines-based Bitcoin Exchange Coins.ph. This was done through a “substantial investment”. Industry sources said Go-Jek paid $ 72 million for the shares.
Coins.ph is a crypto-exchange with 5 million registered users in the Philippines. Coin.ph offers its users the ability to buy Bitcoin, a mobile wallet that allows them to make payments, such as for bills or public transport. Even after the entry of Go-Jek, the company should continue as before. However, the resources and experience of Go-Jek should be added.
Coins.ph experienced a rapid development
Coins.ph originally started as a crypto exchange, but then grew into a broader fintech setup. In two rounds of financing, the company received a total of $ 10 million. Supporters include Naspers, Global Brain, Wavemaker, Beenext, Pantera Capital and others.
The current investment of Go-Jek seems to be a strategic one. This seems startling at first, but one must remember that much of Indonesia’s success is based on its Go-Pay service. This allows money orders, offline payments, insurance and microcredit.
This approach is also followed by arch-rival Go-Jek called “Grab”. Also this company introduces its payment service “GrabPay” in the six largest countries of Southeast Asia. This means that Go-Jek is under some pressure.
It is therefore likely that Go-Pay’s co-operation with Go-Pay will bring new service offerings to Coins.ph. That will probably be insurance, credit and other financial services. This should also increase the user base of Coins.ph in the Philippines, which has at least 105 million inhabitants.
The Philippines is one of the fastest growing markets in South East Asia
Go-Jek CEO Nadiem Makarim said in a statement:”With the second highest population and a strong domestic economy, the Philippines is one of the most exciting markets in Southeast Asia. We look forward to partnering with Coins.ph to help with the country’s digital payment transformation. ”
Next he said: “Today’s announcement marks the beginning of our long-term commitment to the Philippines and a continuation of our mission to improve daily life and bring positive social benefits through technology.”
However, Go-Jek has a lot of competition. Grab prepares the market entry of his product GrabPay, while the financially strong company Oriente is already on the market. Alibaba has already invested in the Philippine payment and fintech company Mynt. Chinese giant Tencent, which has also invested in Go-Jek, has backed its competitor Voyager with $ 215 million. Now Go-Jek joins in and prepares its own $ 2 billion investment. The year 2019 will certainly be an interesting year for the fintech industry in the Philippines.