Asia Digest: Easy Microfinance rolls out digital repayment channel; inDriver enters Vietnam

Sule Pagoda, Yangon, Myanmar. Photo: Harish Shivaraman/unsplash

Myanmar’s Easy Microfinance has rolled out a digital repayment channel. Meanwhile, Russian on-demand ride-hailing firm inDriver has forayed into Vietnam and has lined up aggressive expansion plans in the country.

Easy Microfinance rolls out digital repayment channel

Easy Microfinance, a Myanmar microfinance institution backed by Meridian Capital Limited and Delta Capital, has rolled out a digital repayment channel through Ongo, a digital payment service provider in Myanmar, per an announcement.

It has also announced donations to support the COVID-19 relief efforts in the country. Easy Microfinance donated five million kyat ($3,800) to national and regional government committees and hospitals to support the distribution of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and testing supplies in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

With the launch of the digital repayment platform, Easy Microfinance clients now can repay their loans at any Ongo agent location or even online through the Ongo app.

“The new collaboration with Ongo will provide an easy and convenient repayment method which is in line with what we have developed with Easy Microfinance,” said Askar Alshinbayev, principal and founding partner of Meridian Capital Limited, a primary and founding shareholder in Easy Microfinance.

Easy Microfinance is licensed by the Financial Regulatory Department of the Ministry of Planning and Finance of the Union of Myanmar.

Russian on-demand ride service firm inDriver enters Vietnam

Russian on-demand ride service firm inDriver has forayed into Vietnam as it plans to expand its operations in the Southeast Asian market.

The company currently has more than 260 car drivers and 300 motorbike drivers in the central coastal province of Thua Thien Hue. It expanded last month to Can Tho in the south and the northern port city of Hai Phong.

The ride-hailing firm said customers can negotiate the amounts they have to pay and that marks as the key differentiator for the company. Customers can, in fact, choose drivers based on criteria such as estimated arrival time and vehicle model.

The Vietnamese ride-hailing market is anticipated to register a CAGR of about 16.81 per cent between 2020 and 2025, according to the Reportlinker.com.

Some of the players in the ride-hailing market in Vietnam include Grab, Gojek, BE Group JSC, FastGo, MyGo, and Vato. Grab currently enjoys more than 70 per cent of the ride-hailing market in the country.

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.