Tencent invests up to $150m in Indonesia’s Go-Jek amid SE Asia push

Photo: Go-Jek website

Tencent Holdings Ltd has invested around $100 million to $150 million in Indonesian ride-hailing startup Go-Jek, sources said, in another sign the Chinese tech giant was looking to tap into growth in Southeast Asia’s mobile-based services.

Go-Jek, which already counts global private equity firms KKR & Co LP, Warburg Pincus LLC and venture capital player Sequoia Capital as investors, is seeking to raise more capital from existing and new investors, the sources said.

The startup aims to raise up to $1 billion from its current funding round, the sources, who are familiar with the matter but did not want to be named, told Reuters.

A Go-Jek spokeswoman declined to comment on the company’s fund-raising plans, saying: “If there is information that we can share then we will share it.”

Tencent said it would respond “in due course” when asked about the investment, without giving any more details.

An investment by China’s largest social media and online entertainment firm would indicate it wants to establish its presence in Southeast Asia that many expect will produce the next batch of high-valued tech startups known as unicorns.

Tencent, with a current market capitalization of $341 billion, has previously bought a stake in Singapore-based gaming startup Sea Ltd, formerly known as Garena, which was valued at $3.75 billion after a March 2016 funding round.

Other Chinese tech behemoths have also been carving out their territory in Southeast Asia, home to more than 600 million people and some of the world’s fastest-growing economies.

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd last week said it would invest an additional $1 billion in Southeast Asian online retailer Lazada Group, boosting its stake by nearly a third to 83 percent and amplifying its focus on the region.

Alibaba’s domestic rival JD.com Inc is in talks with Indonesia’s online marketplace Tokopedia for possible investment, a separate source told Reuters.

Go-Jek, which started as a hailing app for motorbike taxis, also operates a food delivery business that a source said yields a much higher margin than ride-hailing. Its mobile payment business, Go-Pay, is growing rapidly as it is complementary with all the other Go-Jek offerings, the source added.

Tencent and Alibaba have each invested in food delivery apps in China and have been fighting to gain market share in the mobile payment space with their respective platforms.

One of the sources said that Go-Jek aims to close the current funding round in the third quarter.

According to a media report, the start-up was valued at more than $2 billion when the funding round started.

Last August, KKR, Warburg and others invested $550 million in Go-Jek at an undisclosed valuation. Warburg is looking to chip in more in this round, sources said.

A spokeswoman for Warburg declined to comment.

Also Read: 

Indonesia’s Go-Jek raises $1.2b led by Tencent, valuation soars to $3b

Singapore: Garena rebrands itself as Sea with $550m Series E in run-up to IPO

Reuters

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.