Indonesian ride-hailing giant Gojek kickstarts Thai operation after brand unification

Photo by Afif Kusuma on Unsplash

Indonesia’s most valuable startup Gojek on Thursday launched a new app for Thailand, in place of its previous app Get unique to the country, to challenge market leader and its archrival from Singapore, Grab.

The move comes about 10 weeks after the Indonesian decacorn (startup worth more than $10 billion) announced its plan to unify its Thai and Vietnamese brands and bring them under one technology platform to take the fight to Grab, which is operating more widely in the region and under the same brand and platform.

The new app will help increase the ability of Gojek in reaching more Thai consumers who can access services for food delivery, motorbike ride-hailing, courier and e-wallet, said Pinya Nittayakasetwat, Gojek Thailand’s country manager. It features a new and improved look with multiple feature upgrades to provide better customer experience and enhanced security, the company said.

Gojek has more than 50,000 drivers and 30,000 merchants in Thailand, where food delivery is booming due to the new coronavirus pandemic but competition among players including Grab, Line and Foodpanda is also intensifying.

Grab entered the Thai market in 2018 when it bought the Southeast Asian business from U.S.-based Uber that pioneered the market. There is no official market share data but Grab’s Thai unit claimed as of the first quarter of 2019 that it covered more than 50% of the total market in the food delivery business with more than four million orders.

Gojek followed Grab in February 2019 when it formed a joint venture with Thai startup Get to mount a two-wheeled challenge to existing players in the kingdom’s growing food delivery market. Gojek’s Thai business entered a new phase by dropping the Get brand and app.

“This is the time to rebrand and launch Gojek under a single application brand,” said Pinya. Gojek is offering discount coupons worth 2,500 baht ($80) to new users until the end of this month to expand its customer base.

Gojek has operations in Singapore, the Philippines, Vietnam and Thailand. Pinya said the brand unification strategy will upgrade user experience and strive to make a big move in investment and rapid expansion.

The Kasikorn Research Center has forecast that the food delivery business will grow at around 10% per year with total market value worth up to 35 billion baht ($1.1 billion) annually.

This article was first published on Nikkei Asian Review. 

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. 
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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.