GREE Ventures leads $1m seed round in Indonesian startup Ayopop

Tokyo-based early stage venture capital firm GREE Ventures has led a $1 million seed funding round into Ayopop, an Indonesian bill payment platform. The round was joined by various high net worth individuals, and was supported by Freecharge founder Sandeep Tandon, the company revealed in a statement.

The fresh funding will help Ayopop expand their tech capabilities, as it plans to launch more features and increase partnerships with other platforms. It is aiming to join hands with e-commerce, traditional market players, and financial service companies.

“We believe that payments will play an essential role in Indonesian fintech landscape over the years to come, and it remains still largely an unsolved problem,” said Nikhil Kapur, of GREE Ventures.

Ayopop offers settlement for a wide range of utilities such as electricity, water, internet and TV, mobile postpaid, and several others. Its mobile app is already available on Google Play and AppStore, and currently records between 50,000 and 100,000 downloads on Android.

The app was launched about a year ago by co-founders Jakob Rost – a former managing director at Lazada Indonesia – and Chiragh Kirpalani, who grew up in Jakarta and was heading teams in Fab.com and Times Internet India. Currently, Ayopop employs 30 members.

Fintech, especially mobile payments, is rapidly growing as other “mainstream” tech players like Grab and Go-Jek are starting to offer similar service. Just yesterday, Grab finally confirmed its intention to acquire Indonesian payment startup Kudo, which is also backed by GREE Ventures.

The space is seeing a lot of exciting action lately, and this could be a sign of validation of Ayopop’s concept, Rost stated.

“Most Indonesians are still paying their bills offline. This behaviour is ultimately shifting online and therefore offering big potential for companies like us. And this is just the beginning. Most of our users have never done an e-commerce transaction before and come from all parts of Indonesia,” he said.

Eventually, Ayopop will want to grow beyond bill payments, Kirpalani added.

“We are a tech company at heart with a very solid product team. We have been studying purchase behaviour and recently launched a scoring algorithm that helps us predict cross-selling opportunities. There is a lot to build on from here and we are actively looking to move further into the fintech space.”

Also Read:

Grab confirms acquisition of Indonesian payment startup Kudo

Uber rival Grab set for new $1.5 funding round, SoftBank pledges $1b

Japan’s Ookami closes Series A round from IMJ, GREE Ventures, others

Days of angel groups with dumb money are gone: Nikhil Kapur, GREE Ventures

Japan’s GREE Ventures closes first round for $60m fund, adds India to targeted markets

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.