Friday, 2024 March 1

KrASIA Weekly: Indonesia as an exciting playground for e-commerce players

Hi there, it’s Khamila from Jakarta.

This week has been very exciting for online shopping enthusiasts and e-commerce platforms in the Land of Thousand Islands as December 12 is celebrated as the National Online Shopping Day (Harbolnas) here. This year’s extravaganza involved over 300 online platforms that offered various tempting discounts and promotions, from flash sale, free delivery fee to cash back, and many more.

The National Online Shopping Day committee expected a total transaction of IDR 7 trillion or nearly US$69 million in 2018. An ambitious but feasible target, considering last year’s shopping day transactions successfully crossed IDR 4,7 trillion or US$33 million, and many new developments have happened since then.

Shopee is the first to eagerly share their report card. Through an official statement, the platform articulated 5.4 million orders being placed in Indonesia on 12.12. Regionally, Shopee saw over 12 million orders on the day, surpassing the recent Shopee 11.11 Big Sale. The relatively young platform, Shopee, that was launched in 2015 in Singapore and following by Malaysia, Thailand, Taiwan, Indonesia, Vietnam, and the Philippines, has been showing impressive growth in Southeast Asia, and Indonesia in particular, challenging the local players like Tokopedia, Bukalapak, and Blibli.

Nonetheless, Shopee is not the only platform with good news to share. Coincides with the national online shopping day, Indonesian e-commerce giant Tokopedia confirmed the latest funding of US$1.1 billion, led by SoftBank. As the most valuable unicorn in Indonesia, Tokopedia expanded beyond the marketplace for physical goods and is now providing a wide array of digital products and fintech services.

The similar expansion move also carried out by fellow e-commerce unicorn, Bukalapak, that has launched a number of different financial services products in the past few years, including loans, credit and insurance, as well as its own e-wallet platform collaborated with Ant Financial-backed digital wallet firm DANA. Just earlier this week, Bukalapak announced its latest collaboration with online investment platform Tanamduit to introduce mutual fund products to first-time retail investors.

More and more e-commerce platforms expanding beyond their core businesses in Indonesia indicates that the country is becoming a red-hot and fast evolving market. However, e-commerce players still face big challenges, such as unreliable logistics and infrastructure as well as a lack of seamless and scalable payment options.

Therefore, not only they should improve their own products and services, but they also need to working together with the government to start with addressing at least the two aforementioned constraints, so that the market could reach the country’s e-commerce market target of US$65 billion by 2022.

Here are some stories you shouldn’t miss from the week.


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China’s Luckin Coffee raises $200m, bringing valuation to over $2b

Tencent Music rises 9.2% on public debut at the NYSE


Year-end interview: what to watch out for in Indonesia’s fintech landscape 2019

How Grab counts on tech engines to race in the fast lane

After 9 months, Lazada Group replaces Lucy Peng with new CEO

Go-Jek vs Incumbents: Overview of the on-demand landscape in Singapore

How Paytren is selling mobile payments to Muslims


Apprentices of SpaceX in China | a KrASIA documentary

Khamila Mulia
Khamila Mulia
Khamila Mulia is a seasoned tech journalist of KrASIA based in Indonesia, covering the vibrant innovation ecosystem in Southeast Asia.

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